Contextualizing Stormy Daniels: the history of presidential affairs, public opinion and media coverage

Mar 8, 2018

The AVN Awards At Mandalay Bay - Arrivals

Adult film actress Stormy Daniels arrives at the 24th annual Adult Video News Awards Show at the Mandalay Bay Events Center January 13, 2007 in Las Vegas, Nevada. ; Credit: Ethan Miller/Getty Images


In the latest installment of news about Trump’s alleged affair with Stormy Daniels, it’s been reported that Trump had won an arbitration proceeding against the adult-film actress.

That was one day after Daniels had sued the president over her right to disclose their relationship because, according to her, Trump had never signed the non-disclosure agreement.

Trump was reportedly unhappy that press secretary Sanders acknowledged that he was involved with the legal proceedings, potentially adding fuel to the story.

We get the latest on the Daniels story, plus we look back at the affairs and scandals of president’s past, including those of Clinton and JFK, to see how those incidents were treated by both the public and the press, as well the politicians themselves.

How has public perception and media coverage of the sex lives of politicians changed over the last 100 years? What legal issues are entangled in the Stormy Daniels situation? And as a member of the public, do you care?



John Wagner, White House reporter for the Washington Post, where his recent article is “Republicans flee the storm over Stormy Daniels and President Trump”; he tweets @WPJohnWagner

David Greenberg, presidential historian and professor of History at Rutgers University; author of “Republic of Spin: An Inside History of the American Presidency” (W.W. Norton & Company, 2016)

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