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The ~20 Times Trump Has Threatened To Sue Someone During This Campaign

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Donald Trump on Saturday threatened to sue the women who have accused him of sexual assault once the election is over. Threatening to sue is a well-worn tactic for Trump. (So is being sued: USA Today reported that Trump has been sued 17 times over the course of this campaign and he’s been the target of 4,095 suits in his lifetime, as of this writing.) By combining a few partial lists with a couple hours’ worth of googling, I managed to collect what I believe to be all the times Trump has threatened a lawsuit since announcing his candidacy on June 16, 2015. (I’m including any time Trump even informally raised the possibility of suing someone, like this or this.) Of the 20 instances that I could find in which Trump threatened to sue, he followed through twice. (Let me know if I missed one.)

  1. On June 30, 2015*, Trump threatened to sue Univision over the Miss USA pageant. He sued.
  2. On July 2, 2015, Trump threatened to sue the National Hispanic Media Coalition after it called one his speeches a “bigoted, racist, anti-Latino rant.”
  3. On Sept. 21, 2015, Trump threatened to sue the Club for Growth, a D.C.-based nonprofit, over negative ads.
  4. On Sept. 22, 2015, Trump threatened to sue StopTrump.us over selling anti-Trump shirts.
  5. On Oct. 14, 2015, Trump threatened to sue Culinary Workers Union and Bartenders Union for saying Trump spent the night at the unionized Treasure Island casino-resort instead of his own hotel. He sued.
  6. On Nov. 19, 2015, Trump threatened to sue John Kasich over negative ads.
  7. On Nov. 20, 2015*, Trump threatened to sue New Day For America (a super PAC) over negative ads.
  8. On Dec. 7, 2015*, Trump threatened to sue Mike Fernandez, a Jeb Bush donor, over negative ads.
  9. On Jan. 18, 2016*, Trump threatened to sue The Washington Post for writing an article about how one of his casinos filed for bankruptcy.
  10. On Feb. 3, 2016, Trump threatened to sue Ted Cruz over voter fraud in the Iowa caucuses.
  11. On Feb. 12, 2016, Trump threatened to sue Ted Cruz for “not being a natural born citizen.”
  12. On Feb. 17, 2016*, Trump threatened to sue Ted Cruz for attack ads.
  13. On March 27, 2016, Trump threatened to sue the Republican Party over a dispute about Louisiana delegates.
  14. On April 12, 2016, Trump threatened to sue the Associated Press for publishing an article about the handling of a Trump-branded condo development in Panama.
  15. On April 27, 2016, Trump threatened to sue David Cay Johnston if he didn’t like what Johnston reported.
  16. On May 18, 2016, Trump threatened to sue the Washington Post for libel.
  17. On July 18, 2016, Trump threatened to sue Tony Schwartz, co-author of “The Art of the Deal,” for negative statements Schwartz made to The New Yorker.
  18. On Oct. 4, 2016*, Trump threatened to sue The New York Times for publishing an article on Trump’s tax returns.
  19. On Oct. 12, 2016, Trump threatened to sue The New York Times for publishing an article about two women who accused Trump of sexual assault.
  20. On Oct. 22, 2016, Trump threatened to sue nearly a dozen women for accusing him of sexual assault.

*Date article was published.

CORRECTION (Oct. 24, 6:25 p.m.): A previous version of this article incorrectly counted two instances of Trump threatening a lawsuit. Trump threatened to sue Rolling Stone and The Huffington Post before he officially launched his campaign, not after.

Christianna Silva is FiveThirtyEight’s fall 2016 politics intern.

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