Ivana Trump Backs Off Rape Allegations: "Donald and I Are the Best of Friends"

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Donald and Ivana Trump

"I have nothing but fondness for Donald and wish him the best of luck on his campaign. Incidentally, I think he would make an incredible president."

A day after The Daily Beast published a story resurfacing Ivana Trump's rape allegations against Donald Trump from their highly publicized divorce in 1989, the ex-wife of the Republican presidential candidate has issued a statement defending her ex-husband.

“I have recently read some comments attributed to me from nearly 30 years ago at a time of very high tension during my divorce from Donald," Ivana said Tuesday in a statement to CNN. "The story is totally without merit. Donald and I are the best of friends and together have raised three children that we love and are very proud of. I have nothing but fondness for Donald and wish him the best of luck on his campaign. Incidentally, I think he would make an incredible president.”

Ivana's explicit deposition from the divorce case was initially revealed in the 1993 book Lost Tycoon: The Many Lives of Donald J. Trump by Harry Hurt III. She recounted a violent argument about a botched scalp reduction that her husband had undergone. In the course of events, Trump allegedly tore out clumps of her hair and then proceeded to tear off her clothes and "rape" her.

The Daily Beast resurfaced the old rape story this week to make the point that Donald Trump's use of the word "rapist" during his presidential campaign -- to describe Mexican immigrants -- was an "unfortunate turn of phrase" in light of his own history.

The Daily Beast's story has also drawn the ire of Donald Trump's lawyer Michael Cohen, who, when reached for comment, responded to Ivana's decades-old rape allegations by insisting that one cannot rape one's spouse.

"Of course, understand that by the very definition, you can’t rape your spouse," Cohen told the site. "It is true. You cannot rape your spouse. And there’s very clear case law.” (Spousal rape is illegal in all 50 states.)

Coen also threatened the author of the piece with legal action if he published the story: “I will make sure that you and I meet one day while we’re in the courthouse. And I will take you for every penny you still don’t have. And I will come after your Daily Beast and everybody else that you possibly know,” Cohen said. “So I’m warning you, tread very f—ing lightly, because what I’m going to do to you is going to be f—ing disgusting. You understand me?”

Cohen has since issued an apology for his rape comments in a statement to CNN: "As an attorney, husband and father there are many injustices that offend me but nothing more than charges of rape or racism. They hit me at my core. Rarely am I surprised by the press, but the gall of this particular reporter to make such a reprehensible and false allegation against Mr. Trump truly stunned me. In my moment of shock and anger, I made an inarticulate comment — which I do not believe — and which I apologize for entirely."

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