NEW YORK — A New York federal judge expressed growing impatience Friday with what he calls ex-President Donald Trump’s “repeated efforts to delay” a defamation lawsuit against him, saying he won’t stop a January trial to await the outcome of a “frivolous” appeal of one of his rulings.
Judge Lewis A. Kaplan made the remarks in a written ruling as he criticized arguments made by Trump’s lawyers in asking him to mothball the 2019 civil claims by a New York columnist who says Trump raped her in a luxury Manhattan department store dressing room in spring 1996.
“This case was largely stalled for years due in large part to Mr. Trump’s repeated efforts to delay,” Kaplan wrote. “Mr. Trump’s latest motion to stay — his fourth such request — is yet another such attempt to delay unduly the resolution of this matter.”
The ruling increases the likelihood that Trump will face the defamation lawsuit on Jan. 15, just as primary season begins in his quest to become the Republican nominee for president next year. The Iowa Republican caucuses are being held that day.
Meanwhile, Trump faces four criminal indictments elsewhere. In two cases, he was accused of seeking to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election. He also faces a classified documents case in Florida and charges that he helped arrange a payoff to porn actor Stormy Daniels to silence her before the 2016 election. He has denied all charges.