A New York Supreme Court judge lifted a restraining order that prevented Mary Trump from publishing her revealing new book about her uncle, President Donald Trump, and his family.
Robert Trump, the President’s brother, had sought court action to stop publication of the book, Too much and never enough: how my family created the most dangerous man in the world. She claimed that Mary Trump was bound by a confidentiality agreement that was included in the 2001 settlement of the estate of Fred Trump Sr., the family patriarch.
But Judge Hal Greenwald wrote that the confidentiality clause was too broad and concluded that it had “too many words, with too many meanings.” The cost of the litigation that was resolved should have been finalized in more detail, more clarity, even if the current situation was understood, at the time the Agreement was signed. “
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Simon & Schuster will release the book on Tuesday.
In his decision (read it here), Greenwald also wrote that efforts to stop the book were futile. Earlier this month, an appeals judge lifted a restraining order against Simon & Schuster, releasing them to publish the book. They increased their release date by two weeks, and several reporters obtained advance copies last week. (Read Deadline’s review here).
Theodore Boutrous Jr. of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, who represents Mary Trump, said in a statement: “The court did the right thing by rejecting the Trump family’s effort to silence Mary Trump’s central political discourse on important issues of public interest”. The First Amendment prohibits prior restrictions because they are intolerable violations of the right to participate in democracy. Tomorrow, the American public will be able to read Mary’s important words for herself. “
In his decision, Greenwald wrote that Robert Trump did not meet several of the requirements to grant a preliminary injunction, proving that he would suffer irreparable harm from the book’s publication and the likelihood of success in the merits. Greenwald also wrote that “stock balancing” was not in his favor.
He wrote that the settlement of Fred Trump’s estate “was a stipulation that resolved multiple claims and, in return, the consideration was paid, no specific consideration was paid for confidentiality. Furthermore, what was confidential was the financial aspect of the Settlement, it may not be as interesting now as it might have been in 2001. On the other hand, the non-confidential part of the Accord, Trump’s family relationships may be more interesting now in 2020 with a presidential election on the horizon. “
Greenwald even cited a recent federal court ruling that denied the Justice Department’s efforts to stop publication of John Bolton’s new book. The room where it happened, It was also published by Simon & Schuster and obtained by reporters in the week prior to its release date.
“Comparing the huge potential cost and logistical nightmare of stopping publishing, remembering and deleting hundreds of thousands of books from all kinds of bookstores, brick and mortar, and virtual libraries and private citizens, is an insurmountable task at the moment,” he wrote. . . “Quote United States v. Bolton … ‘From the looks of it, the horse is not alone outside the stable, it is outside the country.’ “
Trump’s book is a mixture of anecdotes and analysis, going back to family history to show how the President, in his opinion, spent a career failing up and attributing to him a number of possible personality disorders. The White House has dismissed the tome as a “book of falsehoods.”