The former Florida campaign worker who claimed Trump tried to “kiss her,” just got her case booted from court, and also got a scolding from the judge.
Alva Johnson, 43, an outreach director for Trump in Alabama and Florida, said that the then-candidate went for a lip-lock outside one of his rallies in Tampa, Fla., on Aug. 24, 2016.
“I immediately felt violated because I wasn’t expecting it or wanting it,” she told the Washington Post in February, when she filed suit. “I can still see his lips coming straight for my face.”
Johnson said she turned her head to avoid the smooch, which landed on her cheek, instead.
But witnesses including then-Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi said the incident never happened.
A federal judge dismissed a lawsuit by former campaign staffer Alva Johnson, saying “the complaint presents a political lawsuit, not a tort and wages lawsuit.”
“If plaintiff wishes to make a political statement or bring a claim for political purposes, this is not the forum,” U.S. District Court Judge William Jung added.
In an interview with MSNBC in February, Johnson said she briefly was with presidential candidate Donald Trump on an RV during a campaign stop in Florida and told him to “go kick ass” before he stepped out to rally a group of campaign interns. She claimed Trump held her hand and began getting closer before kissing her near her mouth.
“I knew it was inappropriate because I worked in human resources. So I knew that it was completely inappropriate. It was gross and creepy. Like I could sometimes still see those lips,” Johnson told MSNBC host Chris Hayes.
Several other people who were present at the time of the alleged incident, including former Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi, have indicated that it never happened, according to a February report by MSNBC. The White House has maintained that the alleged incident was a fabrication. “This accusation is absurd on its face. This never happened and is directly contradicted by multiple highly credible eyewitness accounts,” Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said in February.
The judge’s statement was critical of “immaterial and impertinent” accusations against the President. “Though this simple battery appears to have lasted perhaps 10-15 seconds, plaintiff has spent 29 pages and 115 paragraphs in the complaint setting it forth. Many of these allegations describe 19 unrelated incidents involving women upon whom Defendant Trump allegedly committed nonconsensual acts, over the past four decades with differing circumstances,” Jung stated in his court order.
Johnson did outreach and coalition work for the Trump campaign in Alabama and Florida in 2016.
Interestingly, Johnson told the Washington Post that she quit the campaign after the controversial “Access Hollywood” tape was made public in October 2016. She said, “I felt sick to my stomach. That was what he did to me.”
Yet, months later, in May 2017, she was telling a very different story.“He is more incredible in person than I think you would even think as you see him on TV,” she said during an appearance on WVNN’s “Politics and Moore“. “He’s just the nicest guy. . . . He treats everyone as if they are a part of his family.”
During that 2017 interview she said she was expecting to soon be given a post-election job as the “second-in-command” at the U.S. Embassy in Lisbon. “I will at some point be heading over to Portugal to work in the embassy,” she claimed. That never happened, so we are obviously left to wonder about her subsequent motivations.
Jung said he would allow Johnson to file a reframed complaint in the next 30 days.
The lead attorney for Johnson’s suit, Hassan Zavareei, issued the following statement: “While we are pleased that the Judge said that Ms. Johnson ‘will receive a fair day in Court,’ today was not such a day. This erroneous ruling forces us to fight this lawsuit against the most powerful sex predator in the world with our hands tied behind our back. But that does not deter us. We are used to fighting tough fights and will continue to do so here.”