AG James' civil lawsuit against Trump could hurt worse than indictments, authors write

 July 30, 2023

Former President Donald Trump faces multiple legal battles on various fronts, from civil lawsuits to state and federal charges. 

While the state and federal indictments tend to suck up all the air in the newsroom, some believe that New York Attorney General Letita James could be Trump's greatest overall threat, given the stakes of a $250 million civil lawsuit trial that will play out later this year.

An Insider writer made the case that if James ends up victorious in the lawsuit, it could damage Trump and his family in the sense that it would shut down his real estate empire in New York City overnight, dealing a massive blow to Trump, his children (except Ivanka Trump, who was removed as a defendant) and the Trump Organization in general.

Two Trump biographers told the outlet that they believe the downfall of the Trump Organization in Manhattan would be the ultimate blow to the Trump family, making the state and federal indictments of little concern compared to the possible outcome of AG James' pursuit.

Damaging outcome

One of the biographers, Michael D'Antonio, described how he believes a loss in the civil lawsuit would impact Trump and his business dealings in New York City.

"I think as a born and raised New Yorker who grew up fantasizing about Manhattan, and truly believed it was the capitol of the world, it will truly damage his sense of self," D'Antonio said.

He added, "Based on what he's said and done, New York has always been central to who he imagines himself to be."

"This would be the rare case that he's actually punished in a way that matters," the biographer and author of "The Truth About Trump," told Insider.

James has relentlessly pursued Trump over "falsifying" business records for the Trump Organization, accusing the company of inflating the value of assets and properties in order to obtain large loans that it wouldn't have otherwise been able to obtain.

Battles ahead

Trump currently faces a federal indictment issued by Special Counsel Jack Smith under President Joe Biden's Department of Justice in connection with the classified document probe.

The former president also faces Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg's indictment related to alleged "hush money" payments made to Stormy Daniels.

He's also expected to face a new state-level indictment later this year out of Georgia, stemming from statements and alleged actions he took regarding the outcome of the 2020 election.

Regardless, Trump continues to dominate the polls for the 2024 GOP nomination, and the indictments have served as nothing more than minor headaches, and extremely valuable fundraising tools. Only time will tell if James is able to level a civil blow against Trump that would actually do him harm.

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