Mar 1, 2022 • 7M

Who's Got the DNA?

Surprising Update on Carroll v. Trump

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Ask E. Jean is the longest, currently-running advice column in American publishing.....and now I'm dipping by big toe into a 15-minute podcast thing.
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Dearest Reader! Never mind that I sound like a screech owl trying to read the courtroom scene in To Kill a Mockingbird. Click the audio! It’s the juiciest Federal Court hearing in ages—two female attorneys arguing whether Donald Trump should be allowed to amend his answer to my defamation suit and sue me—i.e. get the thumbs-up from the judge for Trump and his lawyers to exterminate me off the face of the earth with delays, feints, and esquirely folderol.

Let’s set the scene:

The Plaintiff

Ask E. Jean is a chutzpah-supported publication, and you’ve got chutzpah, right, Darling?

The Defendant

The Place:

A stately wood-paneled courtroom the shade of a butterscotch pie—with banana cream rugs, and maple custard drapes—in the Daniel Patrick Moynihan United States Courthouse, 500 Pearl Street, New York, New York.

The Time:


The Attorneys

Robbie Kaplan

The greatest civil rights lawyer in the country. She won in The United States v. Windsor, which paved the way for gay rights in America. She is overseeing an inquiry into gender inequities at the N.C.A.A, and a couple of months ago she won so big against the Neo-Nazis in Charlottesville that their swastikas now include a big “L” for Loser. Robbie is arguing against . . .

Alina Habba

She’s got oodles of pizzzzaaazzz and is regularly on Fox News and Newsmax these days, and probably not for her work as general counsel for a parking garage company. Bonus points: her offices are close to Trump’s Bedminster golf course.


But Where, You Say, Is the Magnificent Joshua Matz?

Oh, he and his 438 IQ are right here, looking extremely sharp in a buff-and-tan checked shirt, and red tartan tie. Joshua won such a trouncing victory over Trump in this very same Federal Court on October 27, 2020—when he argued that the DOJ should butt out of my case—that I’m surprised the Daniel Patrick Moynihan Federal Court Building did not burst into flames, so seething was the judge’s ruling against the DOJ.

When “What’s-He-Thinking?” AG Merrick Garland and the dudes at the DOJ decided to appeal that decision to the United States Court of Appeals, Second Circuit, it was Joshua—his IQ having doubled by then—who argued for me. Listen to his brilliance here.

So, Reader! While my case is being decided by the Appeals Court, Trump is asking in Federal court to sue me. Got that? Good.

The Bombshell

As you will hear—Reader! Click the audio, for Gawd’s sake!—Robbie tells the judge that we wouldn’t mind if Alina Habba makes a summary judgment motion (or a motion to dismiss) because, as Robbie says: “We’d like to get on with discovery.” We don’t “seek to depose President Trump,” she explains, but we'd simply “like his DNA. That's it.” Boom.

And if you don’t want just that highlight, here’s the full transcript:

Carroll V Trump 2 22 2022 Federal Court
110KB ∙ PDF File


The Press

They went crazy, of course.

The E. Jean Pullets

A Pullet is not quite a Pulitzer, but a coveted “prize hen” goes to the following journalists who did excellent work on the 2-22-2022 Carroll v. Trump story:

Best Headline

Best Reporting

Best Reporting from the Right

Best Thrower of Questions at Robbie Kaplan and Joshua Matz after the Hearing

Best Explanations of Legal Bombshells, Despite How Fast Robbie Kaplan Talks

Best Guess On How the Judge Will Rule

Best Picture of an Umbrella and My Plaid Coat

Best Background Reporting

Best Use of the Word “Balk” in a Sub-Hed

Best Writing


And now, let’s hear from the Conflab, which tells the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, so help me Goddesses.

The Conflab is where we hash over the questions sent to Ask E. Jean—and where our roisterous community routinely saves mankind. And because we are living in a culture of craziness, and because the Conflab has magical powers and can—weirdly! stupendously!—help each of us be brighter, braver and less bumptious—and because we rely on one another for kicks in the pants, I just have one question:

How do you get yourself to important events on time? (Not that that was an issue for me getting to court. Perish the thought…. I merely had to dash through the rain, nearly fall off my bridge, and run around in the mud in very, very high heels, jump start Miss Bingley, my old Mean-Girl Prius, and drive at speeds of up to 83 mph over a mountain pass in a thick fog, to make it on time.)

So how do you avoid such asinine pressure? How do you get yourself together, and out the door in time?

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Credits Where Credit Is Due:

Photo of Trump: Chip Somodevilla / Staff Getty Images; photo of Alina Habba grabbed off a TV screen, and thanks to my TackLife, I got Miss Bingley up and running!