By LARRY NEUMEISTER
NEW YORK (AP) — A judge has rejected a request by lawyers for former President Donald Trump to delay progression of a defamation lawsuit while an appeals court decides if the United States can be substituted as the defendant. A Manhattan federal judge issued a denial Wednesday of the request in the lawsuit brought by columnist E. Jean Carroll. The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals is slated to hear arguments this year on whether Trump can be replaced as defendant. The U.S. Justice Department has asserted that Trump cannot be held personally liable for remarks he made about Carroll because he was president at the time. Carroll has accused Trump of rape.