Retiring GOP rep: I think Stormy Daniels is telling the truth

Retiring Rep. Ryan CostelloRyan Anthony CostellloRep. Brendan Boyle decides against Pennsylvania Senate bid Pennsylvania's Democratic lt. governor files to run for Senate Bottom Line MORE (R-Pa.) said Tuesday he believes adult film star Stormy Daniels's allegations that she had an extramarital affair with President TrumpDonald TrumpMajority of Americans in new poll say it would be bad for the country if Trump ran in 2024 ,800 bottle of whiskey given to Pompeo by Japan is missing Liz Cheney says her father is 'deeply troubled' about the state of the Republican Party MORE.

“I think she is,” Costello replied after MSNBC’s Katy Tur asked if he believed Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, is telling the truth.

The GOP lawmaker said that constituents will often bring up the allegations against Trump during town halls, but that his responses to their questions create divisive reactions.


“From the left it’s never good enough. And from the right the moment that you say anything often the response is, ‘Why are you out there saying that about the president? Why aren’t you defending him?’” Costello said.

The Pennsylvania Republican announced Sunday that he would not seek reelection, citing the "very angry" political environment as a factor in his decision.

“Whether it’s [Trump’s alleged affair with] Stormy Daniels, or passing an omnibus spending bill that the president threatens to veto after promising to sign, it’s very difficult to move forward in a constructive way today,” Costello told the Daily Local News.

A redrawn state district map also led to his decision not to run. The Cook Political Report shifted the Republican’s district from “toss up” to “likely Dem.”

Daniels publicly revealed more details of her alleged affair with Trump during an extensive interview with "60 Minutes" that aired Sunday evening.

It was her first on-camera interview since questions began swirling this year over a $130,000 payment Daniels accepted from Trump's personal lawyer days before the 2016 election, a payment she says was aimed at keeping her silent.

Daniels claimed in the interview that she had consensual sex with Trump in 2006, a year after he married first lady Melania TrumpMelania TrumpAzar regrets Trump didn't get vaccinated on national TV Only Trump can fix vaccine hesitancy among his supporters Trump discussed pardoning Ghislaine Maxwell: book MORE, and that she was threatened years later by an unknown man to stay quiet about the alleged affair.

Costello said Tuesday that fiery responses from constituents that he experienced illustrated the "Catch-22 type of conundrum" facing Republicans in suburban districts.

“And I’m not here to complain about that, but obviously, when I get asked about it, I’m certainly comfortable diagnosing it because I’ve lived through it for the last year and a half,” he said.