Ex-Trump Aide Cliff Sims Explains Why He’s Suing President: ‘I Was Backed Into a Corner’


Former White House aide Cliff Sims — the author of a tell-all Team of Vipers — appeared on CNN Tuesday morning with his lawyer to explain why he’s suing President Donald Trump, who he claims is attempting to silence him.

“My first amendment rights as a government employee cannot be infringed upon by an NDA,” Sims told CNN’s John Berman. “I certainly didn’t want to do this, I’m probably the least litigious person you can imagine, I’ve never sued anybody in my life, but I was backed into a corner by some legal action the Trump folks took and so I felt like I needed to be able to stand up for myself.”

Sims’ lawyer Bradley Moss argued that former federal employees “cannot be censored” from speaking out about their time in the White House after leaving — if the information they divulge is not classified. Moss noted that while Sims signed an NDA during the campaign, the additional one he signed in the White House is “unprecedented” for an administration.

“I wanted to stand up and say that I’m not going to be pushed into a corner, I’m not going to be bullied on this and stand up for myself,” Sims said. “That’s what we teach our kids to do when bullies are coming after them. Like I said, this is certainly not something I wanted to do, something I planned to do. But being backed into a corner, I’m not going to cower.”

According to the New York Times, in his lawsuit, Sims is “alleging that [Trump] used his campaign organization as a ‘cutout’ to improperly seek retribution against former employees and keep them from invoking their First Amendment rights.” Trump’s campaign, per the Times, had filed an arbitration claim against Sims earlier this month for allegedly violating the NDA he signed in 2016.

Watch above, via CNN.

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Aidan McLaughlin is the Editor of Mediaite. Send tips via email: aidan@mediaite.com. Ask for Signal. Follow him on Twitter: @aidnmclaughlin