Once again risking the further alienation of women voters, President Trump went on the attack this morning against the credibility of the second woman to accuse his Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault.
Ignoring the abuse and emotional turmoil that both of the women who have come forward to make the allegations have been forced to endure and ignoring their calls for FBI investigations into the actual facts of the incidents—investigations that could confirm the veracity of their statements by interviewing contemporaneous witnesses—Trump simply condemned the accusations as the mistaken memories of a woman too intoxicated to know what really happened.
According to the highly detailed investigation by The New Yorker reporters Ronan Farrow and Jane Mayer, Kavanaugh exposed his penis and thrust it in the face of Deborah Ramirez at a drunken party while in his freshman year at Yale University. While the article portrays Ramirez as initially reluctant to come forward because of her hazy drunken memory of the incident, she later decided that she was confident enough in her recollection to tell her story, the details of which were independently confirmed by another classmate.
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Trump nevertheless dismissed Ramirez’s allegations, mischaracterizing them by telling reporters at the U.N. General Assembly:
“The second accuser has nothing,” he said. “She thinks maybe it could have been him, maybe not. She admits that she was drunk. She admits that there are time lapses,” he continued.
Calling all of the allegations against his nominee part of a Democratic “con game,” Trump continued to disregard both of the named accusers’ experiences as false narratives as he tried to salvage Kavanaugh’s confirmation, according to The Hill.
“I can tell you that false accusations of all types are made against a lot of people,” the president said. “This is a high-quality person and I certainly hope — it would be a horrible insult to our country if this doesn’t happen. And it would be a horrible horrible thing for future political people, judges … it cannot be allowed to happen.”
The optics of the President dismissing the credibility of women making accusations of sexual harassment and assault on the same day that Bill Cosby was sentenced to prison in the presence of several of his victims after years of allegations against him finally resulted in a conviction will surely take a toll on Republicans in the midterm elections as women flee the party in disgust at the GOP’s contempt for their gender.
With Trump and other senior Republicans refusing to walk away from their damaged nominee, the next few days will be crucial in their attempt to ram through his confirmation. One can only hope that enough Republican Senators value their female constituents to believe the women this time and avoid another Clarence Thomas/Anita Hill scenario.
You can watch Trump attack the credibility of Kavanaugh’s accusers and the Democratic opposition in the clip from his interview in the video below.
Dismissing new allegation against Brett Kavanaugh, Pres. Trump says Democrats are playing "a con game."
— ABC News (@ABC) September 25, 2018
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Original reporting by Brett Samuels in The Hill.