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Combination images of E. Jean Carroll and President Trump. Photo: Ilya S. Savenok/Getty Images for Glamour/Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

Attorneys for writer E. Jean Carroll filed a motion in a New York court Monday contesting the Department of Justice's notice seeking to replace President Trump's private lawyers in her defamation lawsuit against him.

Details: "There is not a single person in the United States — not the President and not anyone else —  whose job description includes slandering women they sexually assaulted," Carroll's lawyers said in response to the DOJ's argument that Trump was "acting within the scope of his office" as president when he said in 2019 that she was "lying" about claims that he raped her in the 1990s.

Why it matters: Carroll's lawyers' filing against the highly unusual intervention of the DOJ comes less than a month before the presidential election.

  • The Elle magazine columnist has requested a DNA sample from the president as evidence of her sexual assault allegations in the defamation case.
  • If the court permits the DOJ to replace Trump's attorneys, "Carroll's complaint would effectively be dismissed," per the New York Times.

What they're saying: The Trump administration did not immediately respond to Axios' request for comment. But a White House spokesperson told Axios last month that Carroll "was trying to sell a book" when she sued Trump for defamation "for denying her baseless claims" and that the DOJ's action was warranted because of a law called the Federal Tort Claims Act.

  • Carroll said in an emailed statement that Trump "knows that I told the truth."

Read the memorandum of law, via DocumentCloud:

Go deeper

Dec 3, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Bolton lauds Barr for standing up to Trump

John Bolton. Photo: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images

John Bolton says Attorney General Bill Barr has done more to undercut President Trump's baseless assertions about Democrats stealing the election than most Senate Republicans by saying publicly that the Justice Department has yet to see widespread fraud that could change the election's outcome.

What he's saying: “He stood up and did the right thing," Bolton said in a Wednesday phone interview.

GOP implosion: Trump threats, payback

Spotted last week on a work van in Evansville, Ind. Photo: Sam Owens/The Evansville Courier & Press via Reuters

The GOP is getting torn apart by a spreading revolt against party leaders for failing to stand up for former President Trump and punish his critics.

Why it matters: Republican leaders suffered a nightmarish two months in Washington. Outside the nation’s capital, it's even worse.

Erica Pandey, author of @Work
3 hours ago - Economy & Business

The limits of Biden's plan to cancel student debt

Data: New York Fed Consumer Credit Panel/Equifax; Chart: Axios Visuals

There’s a growing consensus among Americans who want President Biden to cancel student debt — but addressing the ballooning debt burden is much more complicated than it seems.

Why it matters: Student debt is stopping millions of Americans from buying homes, buying cars and starting families. And the crisis is rapidly getting worse.

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