Michael Avenatti has opposed Donald Trump in the courtroom and on social media, and now the media-savvy lawyer could be taking on the president in the voting booth as well.
In a July 4 announcement, the lawyer representing adult film star Stormy Daniels announced that he would run for president if he doesn’t think there’s another candidate who can defeat Trump. The tweet quickly gained viral attention, with many people offering their support of Avenatti’s bid.
“IF (big) he seeks re-election, 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. We can’t relive 2016. I love this country, our values and our people too much to sit by while they are destroyed. #FightClub #Basta,” Avenatti tweeted.
Avenatti has plenty of experience going toe to toe with Donald Trump. As the representative for Stormy Daniels, he has won a series of court rulings allowing his client to speak about her alleged affair with Trump and has since expanded to taking on the president in a number of other legal battles. Avenatti has offered to represent immigrants pulled apart from their children due to Trump’s family separation policy and has started to speak out against a number of Trump’s other controversial policies.
Michael Avenatti would not be the first quasi-celebrity and Trump foe to float the idea of a presidential bid if no one else emerges who could defeat the real estate mogul turned politician. During the 2016 election cycle, former New York mayor Michael Bloomberg said he would run for president if no other solid option emerged. As CNN reported, Bloomberg was dismayed by Trump’s meteoric rise during the Republican primary and Hillary Clinton’s inability to unite the Democratic Party, though Bloomberg ultimately decided not to run.
Many believed that Bloomberg would only split the non-Trump voters, handing Trump and easier victory, and some have expressed the same concerns about Avenatti, whose political views are not readily known. There is believed to be a strong crop of Democratic hopefuls in the 2020 race, from established politicians like Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren to rising stars in the Senate like Kamala Harris and Corey Booker.
There are others who believe the lawyer’s Fourth of July announcement is either tongue-in-cheek or a bid to get more publicity for himself, and it’s not clear if Michael Avenatti actually plans to run for president against Donald Trump.