Lawyer best known for case against Trump to speak at Dem event


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By David Skolnick

skolnick@vindy.com

YOUNGSTOWN

Michael Avenatti, an attorney best known for representing adult film actress Stormy Daniels in her lawsuits over an alleged affair in 2006 with President Donald Trump, will be the keynote speaker at the Mahoning County Democratic Party Chairman’s Dinner.

The event is Aug. 6.

Party Chairman David Betras said he will have details on the dinner soon.

“It’s a big get for me,” Betras said. “As an attorney, I’m very excited to have one of the top lawyers in the country come speak at our dinner.”

Avenatti confirmed his appearance in a tweet response to Betras: “Thank you. I am honored to have been invited. I look forward to returning to the Midwest and helping you in any way I can.”

Avenatti is a vocal critic of the Republican president and a frequent guest on cable television news programs.

He represents Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, who filed a lawsuit in March seeking to invalidate a 2016 non-disclosure agreement regarding the alleged affair. She is suing Trump and the president’s former personal lawyer Michael Cohen to invalidate a $130,000 payment to allegedly silence Daniels. Trump has denied the affair.

Avenatti last week tweeted that if Trump seeks re-election that “I will run, but only if I think that there is no other candidate in the race that has a REAL chance at beating him.”

Betras said Avenatti recently contacted him through a Twitter private message, writing he liked the party chairman’s memo he sent during the 2016 presidential campaign to Democrat Hillary Clinton urging more of a focus on working-class voters – a recommendation that was ignored. The memo attracted national media attention after Clinton lost to Trump.

In the private message, Avenatti said he wanted to meet Betras and asked for his cell phone number, the chairman said. Betras said he gave his number and the two had a conversation with Avenatti agreeing to speak at the dinner next month.

Keynote speakers at previous party chairman’s dinners include talk show host Jerry Springer, U.S. Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey, and former U.S. Rep. Barney Frank of Massachusetts. The dinner is typically the largest fundraiser for the local party.

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