Porn Watchers Can’t ‘Knock’ Trump For Stormy Daniels Affair, Writer Says

In 'The Federalist,' writer John Sweeney argues that viewers of pornography are wrong to criticize the president for his alleged affair.

Stormy Daniels
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In 'The Federalist,' writer John Sweeney argues that viewers of pornography are wrong to criticize the president for his alleged affair.

The adult film actress Stormy Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, claims that she had an affair with President Donald Trump in 2006, while Melania Trump was home with a newborn, and that she was paid $130,000 in hush money in the final days of the 2016 election in order to not come forward about the affair.

The Daniels allegation, which has resulted in several different lawsuits, has been one of several scandals swirling around the president and has periodically surfaced, most notably in revelations that former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen has admitted his role in the payment arrangement.

But now, one writer has found a new angle for the Trump/Stormy story: That the pornography watchers of America have no business complaining about Trump’s affair because porn consumption isn’t all that different from what Trump is said to have done.

Writing a piece called “You’re Not Allowed To Knock Trump For Stormy Daniels If You Watch Porn” on the conservative website The Federalist, writer John Sweeney acknowledges that Trump was wrong to have committed this assignation and that the president “deserves every second of criticism from his affair with Daniels.” But then Sweeney makes a more provocative argument: That “each time a married man watches pornography, he commits an act of adultery.”

While acknowledging that some will see his argument as “a puritanical, prudish screed,” the author argues that watching porn in secret is tantamount to cheating.

“Imagine that a woman returns home from work only to find her husband on a video chat, engaging in virtual sex with a woman he met online,” Sweeney writes. “Does it really matter if his paramour knows that he is married? Few, if any, would deny with a straight face that the wife would have every right to give her unfaithful husband his walking papers. Direct physical contact is sufficient, but not necessary to commit adultery.”

He goes on to give such examples as men interacting with live cam models, as well as watching pre-recorded adult videos.

“Adultery does not have to take place in real time,” he writes.

There are more than a few holes in Sweeney’s argument. One, you’re “allowed” to knock the president of the United States for whatever you want to knock him for, whether you’re a porn watcher or not. Also, not everyone who watches pornography is a man or necessarily watches it in secret or without the approval of their partner. And most porn consumption likely involves pre-recorded videos and not interaction with another person.

And most significantly, Sweeney leaves out something pretty major: By paying Stormy Daniels hush money – a payment that, as Michael Cohen has said in court, was personally directed by Donald Trump – the president may very well have entered into a criminal conspiracy to subvert campaign finance laws, which could lead to impeachment or even criminal charges. That, more than the affair, is what Trump is being “knocked” for.