Michael Avenatti faced backlash Thursday after telling Time magazine that the Democratic presidential nominee in 2020 “better be a white male.” He claimed that “when you have a white male making the arguments, they carry more weight.”
“Should they carry more weight?” he asked. “Absolutely not. But do they? Yes.”
"I was misquoted, and it was taken out of context," Avenatti later claimed to CNN regarding those comments. He argued that he was just trying to say that white men needed to stand up for women more to influence their peers.
"A big tenet of my speeches is that we need more white men standing up and speaking up to defend women and minorities,” he said. “When they do that, it carries weight among other white men."
Molly Ball, who co-authored the story, told The Hill that she and her co-author Alana Abramson "stand by our reporting."
Avenatti also appears to think he should be the white man to run for president.
"I keep waiting to go to one of these events and to come away with a negative thought as to whether I should do this," Avenatti told Time, but, "it puts me a little closer to actually doing it."
Avenatti’s claim to fame comes from representing adult film actress Stormy Daniels who said she was paid hush money to keep quiet about a decade-old affair with Trump. He also represents Daniels in a defamation lawsuit that was thrown out earlier this month. Daniels was ordered to pay Trump's legal fees in that case.
Avenatti was referred for criminal prosecution Thursday for making false claims to the Senate Judiciary Committee due to his representation of Julie Swetnick in her allegations against then-Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. Swetnick initially accused Kavanaugh of being part of a group of high school guys that gang raped girls.
However, she later walked back some of the accusations in her sworn statement against Kavanaugh, raising serious questions about her credibility.