The Elliott Broidy-Shera Bechard-Donald Trump saga has suddenly taken a very weird twist: Broidy is backing out of the NDA he entered into with Bechard last fall. That agreement required him to make eight $200,000 payments over two years. The first payment was made on December 1st, 2017, and the third was due today. Broidy is refusing to make it:
Mr. Broidy, who worked on the RNC with Mr. Cohen, will withhold the third installment of $200,000 that was due Sunday, in response to an alleged breach of the nondisclosure agreement, according to Chris Clark, a lawyer for Mr. Broidy.
Mr. Clark said Ms. Bechard’s lawyer at the time of the agreement, Keith Davidson, improperly discussed the hush-money agreement with another lawyer, Michael Avenatti, who has replaced Mr. Davidson in representing Stephanie Clifford, a former adult-film star. Ms. Clifford, known professionally as Stormy Daniels, got a $130,000 payment arranged by Mr. Cohen to keep quiet about what she said was a 2006 sexual encounter with Mr. Trump.
“Elliott specifically was paying for confidentiality that would shield his family from the embarrassing mistake he made,” Mr. Clark said. “We can prove there was an intentional breach that renders the contract null and void.”
A spokesman for Mr. Davidson said the lawyer hasn’t breached any agreement. “Any accusation to the contrary is false and defamatory,” said the spokesman, Dave Wedge, adding that Mr. Davidson “looks forward to addressing these matters in the proper venue, which is the court room, not the press.”
This doesn’t appear to make any sense at all, at least if we assume for the purposes of argument that the story Broidy continues to feed to the media — that he had an affair with Bechard, and paid for her silence and subsequent abortion — is actually true.
First, Broidy is a very rich man. It would be strange enough if he were willing to make this whole business a news story again to save $1.2 million, but of course he won’t be saving anything like that. He’s hired Latham & Watkins to represent him in this matter, which means that a huge chunk of that $1.2 million — indeed quite possibly all of it or more — will eventually disappear in legal fees by the time this is resolved.
Second, consider how Broidy treated the confidentiality of this agreement when the WSJ originally contacted him on April 12th, 2018, for comment on the story they ended up running the next day. Even though at that time the only evidence that the “David Dennison” in the NDA whose existence had been leaked to the media immediately after the April 9th raid on Michael Cohen’s office was actually Elliott Broidy was the claim to that effect of the leaker, Broidy immediately admitted to the Journal that “David Dennison” was none other than himself. Now why would he do that if confidentiality was so important to him — especially given that it was already public record that the “David Dennison” in the NDA Cohen had entered into with Stormy Daniels was Donald Trump?
Third, if the last thing Broidy wants is for people to be discussing his supposed affair with Shera Bechard, this is an extremely strange way of pursing that goal. By claiming the agreement is void, Broidy gives Bechard the legal right to do whatever she wants with her story — whatever it may actually be. This last fact, I suspect, may prove to be the key to understanding this very odd development.