PHOTO: CNN
Now playing
01:21
McDougal: Trump tried to pay me after intimacy
PHOTO: CNN
Now playing
02:08
Karen McDougal: I knew Trump was married
Now playing
00:29
Former Playboy model to Melania: I'm sorry
Now playing
01:45
McDougal appears in photo with Trump family
PHOTO: CNN
Now playing
03:41
McDougal: I'm a Republican and voted for Trump
alice stewart ctn karen mcdougal trump 2
PHOTO: CNN
alice stewart ctn karen mcdougal trump 2
Now playing
01:51
Panelist: If you lie with dogs, you get fleas
karen mcdougal anderson cooper
PHOTO: CNN
karen mcdougal anderson cooper
Now playing
01:19
McDougal on 'Access' tape: I was disgusted
PHOTO: CNN
Now playing
00:53
McDougal less fearful after Stormy Daniels
Now playing
02:08
McDougal: I thought we could get married
PHOTO: CNN
Now playing
00:44
McDougal: Why would I want to damage Trump?
PHOTO: CNN
Now playing
00:43
McDougal: Publisher thanked me for my loyalty
PHOTO: CNN
Now playing
01:26
McDougal: We were together 'dozens of times'
Michael D'Antonio CNT
PHOTO: CNN
Michael D'Antonio CNT
Now playing
01:28
Analyst: Trump mood swings worse than teenager
PHOTO: CNN
Now playing
00:44
McDougal says Trump compared her to Ivanka
PHOTO: CNN
Now playing
00:35
McDougal: Trump was sweet, respectful
(CNN) —  

The question now is whether President Donald Trump can hold his tongue – or his tweets – amid a gathering storm of televised allegations and court gambits about his sexual conduct.

Stunning comments in an exclusive CNN interview by former Playboy model Karen McDougal on Thursday put the unusual seeming vow of silence Trump has observed about a trio of civil cases to which he is linked to its most critical test – and raised the issue of how he will respond.

McDougal’s interview with Anderson Cooper ratcheted up already intense personal and legal pressure on Trump, and his position will only get more uncomfortable with a blockbuster CBS “60 Minutes” interview with adult film star Stormy Daniels on Sunday.

A campaign of media appearances and legal moves by the two women, and a third, former “Apprentice” contestant Summer Zervos, leaves Trump in the unaccustomed position of watching mutely as his image is tarnished on television.

The President and White House aides have denied the allegations by all three of the women.

But normally, Trump would leap on Twitter or use a public event to castigate anyone who took a shot at him. After all, he’s feuded with everyone from Hillary Clinton to Meryl Streep and Colin Kaepernick to Joe Biden, who took to the airwaves to rebuke him.

Despite vowing to sue all the women who had accused him of inappropriate sexual conduct once the 2016 election was over, Trump has done no such thing, leaving his lawyers fighting a rearguard action against a wave of accusations in court.

Trump’s natural inclination to return fire to any slight or accusation broadcast on cable news was sorely tested by the content of Thursday’s interview.

McDougal told Cooper that she and Trump had had sex “many dozens” of times, that he upset her by offering money after the first time they were intimate and that they met many times over a 10-month period more than a decade ago.

She also said she had been in love with Trump, and saw a loving side of the former reality star in private that was at odds with his tough public image.

Trump Stormy Daniels not changed story new_00000000.jpg
Trump Stormy Daniels not changed story new_00000000.jpg
Now playing
00:54
Trump gets testy with reporter over porn star
PHOTO: ABC
Now playing
02:51
Stormy Daniels releases sketch
PHOTO: Photo Illustration: Getty/Shutterstock/CNNMoney
Now playing
03:39
Stormy, Cohen and Trump: What you should know
rudy giuliani tel aviv
PHOTO: Globes
rudy giuliani tel aviv
Now playing
01:00
Giuliani: Melania believes Trump over Daniels
PHOTO: CBS/"60 Minutes"
Now playing
03:06
Stormy Daniels: 'I have no reason to lie'
PHOTO: NBC/Broadway Video
Now playing
01:11
Stormy Daniels taunts Trump on 'SNL'
playboy karen mcdougal trump amorio maestra preescolar playmate acuerdo ami digital pkg_00000511.jpg
PHOTO: Karen McDougal / Getty Images
playboy karen mcdougal trump amorio maestra preescolar playmate acuerdo ami digital pkg_00000511.jpg
Now playing
01:20
Karen McDougal: Preschool teacher turned Playboy model
trump time magazine cover
PHOTO: CNN
trump time magazine cover
Now playing
01:52
TIME cover shows Trump in 'Stormy' conditions
PHOTO: photo illustration/cbs/getty images
Now playing
05:07
NYT: FBI searched for porn star, playmate payment records
PHOTO: CNN
Now playing
02:51
The cases that bind Cohen, Davidson
Now playing
01:45
McDougal appears in photo with Trump family
PHOTO: Pool
Now playing
00:49
Trump: No knowledge of Stormy Daniels payment
MIAMI BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 06: Karen McDougal attends Playboy's Super Saturday Night Party at Sagamore Hotel on February 6, 2010 in Miami Beach, Florida. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Playboy)
PHOTO: Getty Images
MIAMI BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 06: Karen McDougal attends Playboy's Super Saturday Night Party at Sagamore Hotel on February 6, 2010 in Miami Beach, Florida. (Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Playboy)
Now playing
02:53
Karen McDougal and the 'catch and kill' system
Stormy Daniels taking a polygraph exam in 2011.
PHOTO: Courtesy Michael Avenatti
Stormy Daniels taking a polygraph exam in 2011.
Now playing
02:58
Polygraph: Stormy Daniels truthful about Trump
LAS VEGAS, NV - FEBRUARY 04:  Adult film actress/director Stormy Daniels hosts a Super Bowl party at Sapphire Las Vegas Gentlemen's Club on February 4, 2018 in Las Vegas, Nevada.  (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
PHOTO: Ethan Miller/Getty Images
LAS VEGAS, NV - FEBRUARY 04: Adult film actress/director Stormy Daniels hosts a Super Bowl party at Sapphire Las Vegas Gentlemen's Club on February 4, 2018 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
Now playing
01:58
The president and the porn star

McDougal is suing American Media Inc., the company she said quashed her story about the alleged affair in a tabloid maneuver known as “catch and kill.”