Trump Caught on Tape Being Trump, Shocking Trump Supporters

An 11-year-old tape of the Republican nominee making misogynistic comments should surprise no one.

Donald-Trump-Billy-Bush

By now, anyone interested enough in American politics to be reading this has seen or read about a 2005 conversation in which the Republican nominee, Donald Trump, makes lewd comments about the ability of powerful men to have their way with women.

WaPo’s David Fahrenthold reports:

Donald Trump bragged in vulgar terms about kissing, groping and trying to have sex with women during a 2005 conversation caught on a hot microphone, saying that “when you’re a star, they let you do it,” according to a video obtained by The Washington Post.

The video captures Trump talking with Billy Bush, then of “Access Hollywood,” on a bus with the show’s name written across the side. They were arriving on the set of “Days of Our Lives” to tape a segment about Trump’s cameo on the soap opera.

Late Friday night, following sharp criticism by Republican leaders, Trump issued a short video statement saying, “I said it, I was wrong, and I apologize.” But he also called the revelation “a distraction from the issues we are facing today.” He said that his “foolish” words are much different than the words and actions of Bill Clinton, whom he accused of abusing women, and Hillary Clinton, whom he accused of having “bullied, attacked, shamed and intimidated his victims.”

“I’ve never said I’m a perfect person, nor pretended to be someone that I’m not. I’ve said and done things I regret, and the words released today on this more than a decade-old video are one of them. Anyone who knows me knows these words don’t reflect who I am,” Trump said.

In an apparent response to Republican critics asking him to drop out of the race, he said: “We will discuss this more in the coming days. See you at the debate on Sunday.”

The tape includes audio of Bush and Trump talking inside the bus, as well as audio and video once they emerge from it to begin shooting the segment.

In that audio, Trump discusses a failed attempt to seduce a woman, whose full name is not given in the video.

“I moved on her, and I failed. I’ll admit it,” Trump is heard saying. It was unclear when the events he was describing took place. The tape was recorded several months after he married his third wife, Melania.

“Whoa,” another voice said.

“I did try and f— her. She was married,” Trump says.

Trump continues: “And I moved on her very heavily. In fact, I took her out furniture shopping. She wanted to get some furniture. I said, ‘I’ll show you where they have some nice furniture.'”

“I moved on her like a bitch, but I couldn’t get there. And she was married,” Trump says. “Then all of a sudden I see her, she’s now got the big phony tits and everything. She’s totally changed her look.”

At that point in the audio, Trump and Bush appear to notice Arianne Zucker, the actress who is waiting to escort them into the soap-opera set.

“Your girl’s hot as s—, in the purple,” says Bush, who’s now a co-host of NBC’s “Today” show.

“Whoa!” Trump says. “Whoa!”

“I’ve got to use some Tic Tacs, just in case I start kissing her,” Trump says. “You know I’m automatically attracted to beautiful — I just start kissing them. It’s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don’t even wait.”

“And when you’re a star, they let you do it,” Trump says. “You can do anything.”

“Whatever you want,” says another voice, apparently Bush’s.

“Grab them by the p—y,” Trump says. “You can do anything.”

As noted in the (presumably revised) piece, several Republican officials who had previously endorsed Trump have called on him to step aside as the nominee. Many more have condemned the remarks in strong terms without (yet) pulling their endorsement.

If this ends up being the death knell in Trump’s campaign for president, I’ll take it. If so, however, I’m befuddled. Aside from the use of some locker room language*, there’s nothing new here. Well before the campaign, we knew Trump was a serial womanizer. He’s dumped two wives, trading them in for younger models. He’s been on live television making crude, misogynistic remarks for over a decade. He’s been confronted with those remarks in virtually every debate going back to the primaries. There’s nothing even remotely surprising here.

As we’ve seen in recent scandals involving professional athletes abusing women, people seem to be more shocked by things they see on video or here on tape than by mere written description. But Trump has been going on Howard Stern’s radio show—which is recorded in both audio and video form–making comments like this for a very long time. The vagaries of broadcast television presumably kept him from being this graphic on his various “Apprentice” stints, but one gathers that he was routinely sexist and, again, has been repeatedly called out for it in the debates.

This seems like a really weird “last straw” for a guy who has built his candidacy on unvarnished bigotry combined with obviously dangerous policy proposals and an unprecedented refusal to study the issues. Again, I’ll take it.

UPDATE (1147): Mediaite’s  Lindsey Ellefson reminds us of a national media report from way back in 1999:

Today, audio from 2005 leaked that showed Donald Trump casually talking about his attemptto seduce a married woman and how easy it is to “grab [women] by the p*ssy” when you’re a famous guy. This has followed months and months of everyone from Megyn Kelly to Hillary Clinton to former Miss Universe Alicia Machado speaking out about how badly Trump treats women, but it turns out that he outed himself as a misogynist long ago.

In 1999, according to this article in the New York Post, he told Chris Matthews he could never run for President because of his history with women. Here is what he said:

People want me to [run for president] all the time … I don’t like it. Can you imagine how controversial I’d be? You think about [Bill Clinton] and the women. How about me with the women? Can you imagine?

When Matthews joked about Monica Lewinsky by saying, “You might be close, but there’s no cigar,” Trump said, “They might like my women better, too.”

Again, none of this is new. Not even a little bit.

Also, it’s worth noting the “locker room” nature of Matthews’ reaction. The norms of acceptable conversation about these matters have changed drastically over the last twenty years.

_________________

*Note: Some Trump defenders have claimed that bragging about sexual assault is just how guys talk in locker rooms. It isn’t. But, certainly, the vulgar language used to describe body parts is commonplace. But even that tends to go away with maturity; it’s bizarre coming from a then-59-year-old father of daughters.

FILED UNDER: Campaign 2016, US Politics
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is a Security Studies professor at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. PJ says:

    A lot of fathers of young daughters will have quite interesting discussions with their daughters in the future.

    Who did you vote for in 2016? The first woman to be elected President or the misogynist racist?




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  2. Mark Ivey says:

    The Bushes send their regards. . .




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  3. valloken says:

    They didn’t care until he insulted a white women. On a day where Trump advocated the murder of 5 long exonerated black men this is what gets some folks backs up. And that was only to make tepid statements about this not outright denounce the man.

    For those people who think that the GOP will be able to be able to remake its image to be competitive with the groups that currently despise it, please note this newest scandal as an example of why that won’t happen.

    The GOP doesn’t have the morals or scruples to make a change. This reinforces not only that this who Trump is but also that this is what the GOP agrees with.




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  4. C. Clavin says:

    Tipping point, James.
    Tipping point.




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  5. Chris says:

    He’s already on record as having said “women: you’ve got to treat them like shit” in the 90s, by which point he already had daughters. I’m a father of two girls, and how anyone in that position can believe that women should be treated”like shit” baffles me. What would he say if a potential son in law said to him “don’t worry Donald, I’ll make sure I treat Ivanka like shit.”

    Those comments didn’t stop him getting his party’s nomination. I expect the revelation that he made obscene comments about being able to grope and force himself on married women to have zero impact on the race and to be excused by the hypocrites who support him.




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  6. SKI says:

    If this ends up being the death knell in Trump’s campaign for president, I’ll take it. If so, however, I’m befuddled. Aside from the use of some locker room language*, there’s nothing new here.

    Yeah, there are 2 things that are ‘new’.

    1. It isn’t sexist or misogynistic talk, it is bragging about sexual assault that are crimes.

    2. It’s not a story, it’s a recording. Think Ray Rice.




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  7. C. Clavin says:

    Clinton woke up this morning as Mrs. President.
    The debate tomorrow night will be fascinating.




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  8. CSK says:

    Well, the defenses of Trump are exactly what you’d expect:

    1. “All guys talk that way!”

    2. “Bill Clinton is worse!”

    3. “Hillary Clinton enabled her rapist husband!”

    Trump was exactly right when he said he could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue and his fans would still love him.




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  9. CSK says:

    @C. Clavin:

    Especially since he boasted he didn’t prepare for this upcoming debate.




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  10. Jen says:

    And almost no one is discussing the dump of a bunch of Wikileaks emails. Assange and Putin must be furious.

    Trump bragging on tape about what amounts to sexual assault is just another layer of weird and gross behavior. He’s absolutely disgusting.

    (I read the piece on Politico, and there just doesn’t seem to be very much that’s damaging to Clinton in those emails.)




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  11. C. Clavin says:

    And Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell and Reince Preibus the rest of the spineless Republicans own this.




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  12. Kari Q says:

    I am as surprised as you are, James. Like you, I thought the video contained nothing new, nothing we didn’t already know. Women had claimed he assaulted them before this, and it never seemed to matter.

    I also am surprised that the racism, the previous misogyny, the ignorance, the complete lack of effort to remedy that ignorance, and the unstable personality were not seen as disqualifying. But this tape is.

    I am also deeply disturbed by the knowledge that the only thing that is saving us from an incompetent, racist, neofascist as president is that Trump is really bad at being a candidate.

    Still, we appear to be safe from that threat, so I will be grateful for that blessing.




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  13. Jen says:

    @Kari Q:

    Women had claimed he assaulted them before this, and it never seemed to matter.

    Well, of course. That’s “women claiming.” The tape is Trump advocating assault, in his own words. To those of us who have long been disgusted with him and believe the women who have claimed he assaulted them, this isn’t news. To those who were trying to compartmentalize their support of Trump as a candidate, it’s a bridge too far to have his voice saying these things.




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  14. Rusty Shackleford says:

    Aside from the use of some locker room language*, there’s nothing new here. Well before the campaign, we knew Trump was a serial womanizer. He’s dumped two wives, trading them in for younger models. He’s been on live television making crude, misogynistic remarks for over a decade. He’s been confronted with those remarks in virtually every debate going back to the primaries. There’s nothing even remotely surprising here.

    I strongly disagree. Sexual assault is categorically different than lewd remarks. You allude to this point at the end of the article, but it cannot be emphasized enough.




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  15. Mikey says:

    This seems like a really weird “last straw” for a guy who has built his candidacy on unvarnished bigotry combined with obviously dangerous policy proposals and an unprecedented refusal to study the issues.

    The Republicans who’ve supported him but didn’t really want to finally got their way out.




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  16. James Joyner says:

    @CSK: I think 2 and 3 are both true statements and not a defense of Trump.

    @Rusty Shackleford: That’s true, of course. Aside from the “grab them by the pussy line”—which I’m writing off as sick bravado rather than descriptive of actual conduct—none of the rest of this would have been considered “sexual assault” in 2005. Kissing without prior consent would indeed have been written off as “boys being boys” even that recently.

    @Kari Q: Right. As bad as this is, I don’t think it’s necessarily disqualifying in a vacuum. If it were inconsistent with the rest of his public life and semi-private conduct, we could dismiss it as an aberration. Certainly, Bill Clinton went a lot further than merely talking about sexual assault. But, unlike Clinton, Trump has few obvious redeeming qualities.




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  17. MarkedMan says:

    James I think your puzzlement is premature as it remains to be seen if this has much of an effect on his supporters no matter how much it disgusts those of us already against him or those who are undecided.

    There’s an old saw that a conservative is a liberal who’s been mugged. There’s some truth in that. But my corollary, a liberal is a conservative who’s had an injustice happen to them personally, also has some truth. So, if I were to guess, if this hurts him with his declared supporters at all it will be with his women supporters but not the men.




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  18. CSK says:

    @MarkedMan:

    From what I’m reading in the comments sections of the pro-Trump sites, his committed women supporters are still with him. According to them, their fathers, husbands, brothers, sons, friends all talk and act the same way.

    But they’re devout, God-fearing social conservative Christians, you know.




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  19. Liberal Capitalist says:

    @James Joyner:

    If this ends up being the death knell in Trump’s campaign for president, I’ll take it. If so, however, I’m befuddled. Aside from the use of some locker room language*, there’s nothing new here.

    We all know this here, as we are political geeks… but this story has gotten huge exposure and in the face of all Americans, even those that believe that Trump can do no wrong (and even though it was released on a Friday afternoon). It is the October surprise.

    It is also having others step forward with their stories:
    http://www.nytimes.com/2016/10/09/opinion/sunday/donald-trump-groper-in-chief.html

    Support will drop off from other high profile republicans, but of course he will get a dead-cat-bounce in the polls in about two weeks… but he’s toast.




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  20. Hal_10000 says:

    On a day where Trump advocated the murder of 5 long exonerated black men

    OK. Pet peeve: Trump did not call for the execution of the Central Park Five. He used the case as a springboard to call for the return of the death penalty. It’s a nuance but an important one and, much as I hate Trump, I don’t like words being put into his mouth. What Trump has said since they were exonerated is much worse. I could understand being swept up in the hysteria surrounding that case. To look at it with cold thought 25 years later and say, “eh, they must be guilty of something” betrays a vile animus and an inability to admit mistakes.

    As for “why this?” I think it’s just the straw that broke a very stubborn camel’s back. We see this all the time in politics where the voters forgive, forgive, forgive and the suddenly boom, they can’t take anymore. All year, the GOP has been focusing on beating Clinton and being willing to ignore who Trump is. And I think the scales have finally fallen off a few eyes. They’ve realized Trump isn’t someone who occasionally says or does bad things; he’s a bad person.

    As for the talk itself, I might at least entertain the notion that he was just boasting or joshing. But there is a history of him acting out those words, behaving this way. This is who he is.




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  21. Hal_10000 says:

    PS – And you have to wonder: if this is what’s coming out on October 7, what the hell is still out there?




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  22. Mikey says:

    @CSK: I guess that’s why they still support Trump–they’ve grown up in a world where excuses are made for men abusing women. To them, a woman’s place is under a man, both figuratively and literally, so Trump’s admissions are not anything to get worked up about.




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  23. Mikey says:

    @Hal_10000:

    As for the talk itself, I might at least entertain the notion that he was just boasting or joshing. But there is a history of him acting out those words, behaving this way. This is who he is.

    Yes. He wasn’t just engaging in masculine posturing and puffery, he was bragging about things he’s actually done.

    His defenders are trying to paint it as the former, of course.




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  24. Jen says:

    @Hal_10000: I wondered that too, but I think the timing before the debate is perhaps the goal? To throw him off-kilter?

    I think there’s plenty we still haven’t heard about.




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  25. CSK says:

    @Hal_10000:

    Maybe the tape of the interview with Wendy Williams in which Williams asks Ivanka Trump what she and Donald have in common and she replies: “Golf. Real estate.” Williams then turns to Trump and asks him what he and Ivanka have in common. Trump relies: “I’d like to say ‘sex,’ but…”

    The tape is popular on Youtube. I’m surprised they haven’t used it yet. Perhaps they’re saving it.




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  26. Liberal Capitalist says:

    @Rusty Shackleford:

    I strongly disagree.

    Hi-larious!

    I’ve thought to myself: Dale Gribble is the perfect Trump supporter profile.

    And here you are, using Dale’s alter ego.




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  27. Loviatar says:

    CSK:

    Well, the defenses of Trump are exactly what you’d expect:

    1. “All guys talk that way!”

    2. “Bill Clinton is worse!”

    3. “Hillary Clinton enabled her rapist husband!”

    Trump was exactly right when he said he could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue and his fans would still love him.

    James Joyner:

    @CSK:I think 2 and 3 are both true statements and not a defense of Trump.

    Takeaway
    – James Joyner believes former President Bill Clinton is worse than Donald Trump.
    – James Joyner believes former President Bill Clinton is a rapist.

    ————

    Rusty Shackleford:

    I strongly disagree. Sexual assault is categorically different than lewd remarks. You allude to this point at the end of the article, but it cannot be emphasized enough.

    James Joyner:

    Aside from the “grab them by the pussy line”—which I’m writing off as sick bravado rather than descriptive of actual conduct—none of the rest of this would have been considered “sexual assault” in 2005. Kissing without prior consent would indeed have been written off as “boys being boys” even that recently.

    Takeaway
    – James Joyner believes forcing yourself on a woman is not sexual assault. Its just “boys being boys”

    ————

    @Kari Q:

    To those of us who have long been disgusted with him and believe the women who have claimed he assaulted them, this isn’t news.

    James Joyner:

    Right. As bad as this is, I don’t think it’s necessarily disqualifying in a vacuum. Certainly, Bill Clinton went a lot further than merely talking about sexual assault.

    Takeaway
    – James Joyner doesn’t believe sexual assault is necessarily disqualifying to be President of the United states.
    – James Joyner justifies his excuse of Trump’s sexual assault because he believes former President Bill Clinton committed sexual assault.

    ————

    WOW

    smh

    WOW

    smh

    WOW

    smh




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  28. Mister Bluster says:

    @James Joyner:..Aside from the “grab them by the pussy line”—which I’m writing off as sick bravado rather than descriptive of actual conduct—

    @CSK:..From what I’m reading in the comments sections of the pro-Trump sites, his committed women supporters are still with him. According to them, their fathers, husbands, brothers, sons, friends all talk and act the same way.

    Time to wake up James.




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  29. Andrew says:

    Well…it looks like respecting the person you want to be the leader of the free world, that has, that has been erased from the checklist. The list that our country used to use to elect representatives.

    Wow.

    This is not a fucking limbo contest. We are not trying to see how low we can go.




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  30. Andrew says:

    Well…it looks like respecting the person you want to be the leader of the free world, that has, that has been erased from the checklist. The list that our country used to use to elect representatives.

    Wow.

    This is not a f*cking limbo contest. We are not trying to see how low we can go.




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  31. James Joyner says:

    @Loviatar: This isn’t that hard. Yes, Bill Clinton was credibly accused of rape and certainly committed multiple acts of sexual assault. That was disqualifying. Trump is disqualified for a whole host of reasons but mere empty talk about sexual assault isn’t, in and of itself, disqualifying.

    @Mister Bluster: Again, I think this is pretty low on the list of reasons Trump shouldn’t be president. I think he’s pretty obviously a misogynist but knew that already. Admitting to kissing women without their prior permission is creepy but wouldn’t have been super shocking in 2005, when the conversation occurred. The “grab ’em by the pussy” line is horrific if taken literally but I’m not sure it should be.

    @Andrew: Again, I’ve never been on the Trump bandwagon. It’s been obvious since the time of his announcement that he was unqualified for the presidency. I’m merely expressing puzzlement that it took this tape, which really provides little in the way of new information; it merely confirms what we already knew.




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  32. Andrew says:

    @James Joyner:

    Granted I did not exactly outline who I was talking to, I can say it was not directed at you specifically.

    It was more an observation of this morning’s news.




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  33. PJ says:

    @James Joyner:

    This isn’t that hard. Yes, Bill Clinton was credibly accused of rape and certainly committed multiple acts of sexual assault. That was disqualifying. Trump is disqualified for a whole host of reasons but mere empty talk about sexual assault isn’t, in and of itself, disqualifying.

    Maybe you should read up on Jill Harth?




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  34. CSK says:

    The point is that Trump thinks, talks, and acts like a 16-year-old delinquent, and it’s not just about women. Extrapolate what he says and thinks about women–and apparently does to them–to everything else. How to deal with ISIS? “Bomb the sh!t out of them.” Well, where, Donald? When? What kind of weapons? Are you sure you can get them all in one place to annihilate them in a single bombing? “Build a wall.” Okay. Again, where? Down the middle of the Rio Grande? On whose property? Grazing rights?




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  35. nick says:

    Bill Clinton “…certainly committed multiple acts of sexual assault” means YOU think Bill Clinton raped someone because you have to think that, for reasons only you know. Very disappointed. I have been reading this site for years, and haven’t commented much, but I think this the last time I visit this site.




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  36. Davebo says:

    Show me on the doll where Bill touched you James!

    It must have been horribly traumatic.




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  37. @nick:

    Why are the words of Juanita Broderick or any of the other women who have accused WJC of sexual assault any less credible than those of any other woman who alleges she was raped?




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  38. Jen says:

    I think if the Republican Party and the RNC want to survive, they should either listen to Ana Navarro or put her in charge. She has zero f**ks left to give, and I’m impressed.




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  39. James Joyner says:

    @PJ: Fair enough; I’m just taking the tape as a single point of evidence. My larger point here is that we already knew Trump treated women horribly.

    @Davebo: I don’t understand how someone can simultaneously think Trump is disqualified for his disgusting comments but that Bill Clinton wasn’t for his serial abuse of women while governor of Arkansas and president of the United States. That isn’t an excuse for Trump or an argument for electing him. It’s to say that we ought to be consistent here.




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  40. James Joyner says:

    @Jen: While I take Navarro’s larger point, it’s possible to simultaneously believe Trump’s words were awful but that “private” words ought not be used on the public airwaves. While I disagree with both stances, it’s possible to argue that Trump is qualified to be president and that we shouldn’t say “pussy” on CNN when kids might be watching. (I’m quite sure that even really good presidents have used that word in private.)




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  41. Pylon says:

    @Doug Mataconis: Because she denied it under oath? And because Ken Starr (!) interviewed her and decided it wasn’t worthy of pursuing?




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  42. Davebo says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    Well counselor, how would you handle a case like Juanita Broderick?

    How many times would she have to swear out affidavits that no assault took place to convince you and James?




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  43. Lit3Bolt says:

    @Doug Mataconis: @James Joyner:

    For “independents” who are “not voting for Trump,” you guys are being awfully defensive about this, and are repeating Trump campaign talking points.

    False equivalence and “both sides do it,” forever!




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  44. Davebo says:

    @James Joyner:

    You take it as gospel that the alleged “serial abuse” occurred James. Obviously you’re highly invested in that.




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  45. Pete S says:

    @Doug Mataconis: my understanding was that Ms Broderick twice gave depositions and both times refused to repeat her story under oath? Even Ken Starr said he doesn’t believe the story she gives the media, and he is not exactly a Clinton enabler.




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  46. Davebo says:

    @Lit3Bolt:

    James isn’t an independent and has made that clear. Doug is a Libertarian meaning he’s a Republican who’s ashamed to admit it.




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  47. @Davebo:

    Broderick is but one name that has come up. There’s also Kathleen Wiley, among others. The point is that we are told that accusations of rape and sexual assault ought to be believed, so why didn’t that apply to the accusations made against WJC?

    I’d also note that it isn’t uncommon for women who have accused someone of rape to withdraw those accusations at a later date out of embarrassment, or for other other reasons, even though they are true.

    @Lit3Bolt:

    You couldn’t be more wrong. My only point in bringing up the accusations against WJC is that it is remarkable to me that the same people who tell me that I shouldn’t believe the accusations against Clinton tell me that I am obligated to take every allegation of rape or sexual assault at face value.

    It’s either okay to question those allegations when they are made, or it’s not. So, which is it?

    Additionally, I was merely asking Nick a question regarding why he denies the reality that Bill Clinton was a serial sexual aggressor at the very least. I suspect his reasoning is entirely partisan.




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  48. Davebo,

    I haven’t been a “Republican” for more than a decade now, the fact that you refuse to believe that isn’t my problem.




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  49. Steve V says:

    This reminds me of what came out about Arnold Schwarzenegger when he was running for governor of California.




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  50. gVOR08 says:

    @Kari Q:

    Like you, I thought the video contained nothing new, nothing we didn’t already know.

    I had the same feeling, one more confirmation of stuff we all know. Then I saw my wife’s reaction. She already hated Trump as a misogynist pig, but this struck a nerve. I expect her reaction was typical.




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  51. @Rusty Shackleford:

    Sexual assault is categorically different than lewd remarks. You allude to this point at the end of the article, but it cannot be emphasized enough.

    Let me concur with this for emphasis. The problem is not the language used, but the actions the described (and extolled).




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  52. Davebo says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    Seriously? You give up on Juanita so quickly and move on to Wiley?

    Wiley actually makes Broderick seem credible by comparison!




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  53. Tyrell says:

    This type of stuff from the people in power is not and should not be surprising. Look at John Kennedy and his affairs. I liked and respected JFK, but his carryings on ruined his image. People were shocked about Nixon’s private language and tone.
    Look at the affairs of many presidents and leaders. Bill Clinton’s shenanigans. Most of them do it.
    The timing: these decade old quotes of Trump just happened to come out as the same time of government economic report that showed a weak, mediocre month. Keep in mind that Trump is up against a political machine resourced and controlled by powerful world financial houses that can do anything.
    Some of the main line “news” channels were obsessed and
    just giddy about this Trump deal, to the point of virtually ignoring Hurricane Matthew. Talk about journalism responsiblity. Chris Matthews could have been blown down the street, wading in water and he would still be talking about the latest Trump flap. So if you are needing hurricane news, don’t go to CNN or some of the other controlled news. Remember last week the attention was all on the Miss Universe flare up, all the while Russia was once again on the move, and the historic city of Damascus was being destroyed.
    This is interesting: on October 1 (October surprise ?), our internet was handed over to the control of a secretive, shady cabal. An action by the president that is wholly unconstitutional. How much of that did you see on the news ? So don’t be surprised at more spyware, hacking, freezes, glitches, site downs, 404 errors, and websites
    just disappearing. Look for more unconstitutional actions from the president in the next three months. I certainly would not be surprised if the elections were canceled or postponed. I know that this will be scoffed at. I do not get news from the main line news.
    If you are looking for hurricane news and updates, you will probably have to get it from local stations or TWC. You won’t find any coverage on the gossip news channels.
    See: E.O. 11051.




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  54. James Joyner says:

    @Lit3Bolt: I’ve been rather clearly anti-Trump since the beginning of this contest. I’m making some very narrow points here, none of which are remotely pro-Trump. First and foremost, the point of the OP is that we already knew Trump was a misogynist pig who treated women horribly. In the ensuing discussion, I’ve made two other points. First, that it’s amusing to watch those who supported Bill Clinton suddenly decide that sexual assault disqualifies a man for the presidency (and, vice versa, Republicans who wanted to impeach Clinton but still support Trump). Second, that, absent so much other evidence that Trump was a pig, the tape alone wouldn’t necessarily be Game Over in that it might be explainable as extremely distasteful but out-of-character hyperbole.




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  55. CSK says:

    One detail in Broaddrick’s story really undermined her credibility with me, and that was the business about Bill saying “better put some ice on that” as he left the room.

    This is a line of dialogue from a forties or fifties film noir, not something a rapist says as he leaves the scene of the crime.

    In fact, it reminds me a bit of a story Trump once told about having to fend off the advances of a “beautiful, gorgeous, high society woman” at a party. He claims she said: “Now, Donald! I don’t care. I have to have you now!”

    Women only talk this way in the mind of a low-grade male novelist–and in the mind of Donald Trump.




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  56. Lit3Bolt says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    Just pointing out you are repeating Jim Hoft’s reponse to this scandal, rather than dwelling on the actual story.

    But that’s just Trump being Trump, and Doug and James minimizing it, while desperately trying to fluff e-mail non-scandals.




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  57. CSK says:

    @James Joyner:

    Not to nitpick, but was this a private conversation? Trump had to know he was being taped. And if, with all his media experience, he didn’t know, or didn’t assume, he was being recorded, then he’s either stupid or…he wanted those comments he made preserved for posterity. This is a guy who bragged publicly about committing adultery.




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  58. dmichael says:

    I am appalled by this post and a few of the comments to it. A lawyer and a teacher don’t get it. It is not “locker room language” that is the problem, it is that Trump has admitted to serial sexual assaults, FORCING himself on women. Doug can list all of the women that he THINKS support his view that WJC did the same thing. I suggest that he read “The Death of American Virtue” by Ken Gormley before he lists another woman who, in fact, doesn’t support his claim about WJC. (By the way, it is “Kathleen Willey,” not “Wiley.”)




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  59. Pylon says:

    @gVOR08: The actions of Trump (and Bush) before and after leaving the bus and meeting the woman provoke a reaction as well. They crudely gawk at her and then smarmily come on to her. Bush is actually a little worse, trying to provoke some sort of sexual banter between the three of them. Of course, he is just playing off the stories he’s just been told on the bus.




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  60. michael reynolds says:

    The problem for Republicans is neither what he said nor what he may have done. They don’t care. They don’t care that he’s a racist, they don’t care that he’s a misogynist pig. They don’t care that he’s a mentally unstable cretin who’d be in control of thousands of nuclear weapons.

    Racist, sexist, mentally unstable? Hell, that’s just the short description of most Republican voters.

    What GOP office holders, pundits and apologists are waking up to is the fact that for the next 30 days they’re going to be hearing, “Grab ’em by the pussy.” And they have to figure out how to square their alleged Christian beliefs with a man who just months into his third trophy wife is off chasing married women. They know more tape is coming. In this day and age if it isn’t on tape it didn’t happen. And this is very much on tape.

    My own personal bet is that this is oppo, not an accident, and Hillary has more. Perhaps much, much more. Your smarter variety of Republican understands (finally!) that a defense of Trump on this is messing with the 51% ‘minority.’ That scares them. It’s slowly penetrating their dim little minds that a man who brags about sexual assault has almost certainly committed sexual assault. And the cleverer among them understand that because we now have this tape, all future accusations will be seen as far more credible.

    So the pol-pundit class is starting to get it, starting to see the trap they’ve fallen into. But for the average GOP voter? I doubt Trump’s numbers will drop by even 2%, and those will be Mormons. What will happen is that more undecideds will be willing to openly support Hillary. It’s a 3-4% race right now, already en route to a 6-7 point race thanks to Trump’s 3:00 AM tweet madness. This I suspect will make it an 8-10 point race.




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  61. charon says:

    @James Joyner:

    Yes, Bill Clinton was credibly accused of rape and certainly committed multiple acts of sexual assault.

    The credibility of Juanita Broderick and Kathleen Willey are your opinions. Other opinions differ.

    but that Bill Clinton wasn’t for his serial abuse of women while governor of Arkansas and president of the United States

    Big talk! Any examples?

    @Doug Mataconis: .

    And Julie Hiatt Steele? You people really love you some Kathleen Willey credibility.




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  62. Jen says:

    @James Joyner: Navarro’s larger point was what I was getting at with my comment.

    She has had it with this nominee and anyone willing to defend him, because he’s indefensible. She, and others like her–like Kasich, and like you–who have steadfastly refused to buckle to pressure to support Trump just because he is the nominee are the ones who should be remaking the party.

    I have little sympathy for those who tried to have it both ways and are now scrambling for cover. (In NH, Kelly Ayotte has just issued a statement saying she’s not going to vote for him, and will write in Gov. Pence in protest.)

    The never-Trumps have been vindicated, the “well, okay fine then” Trumps are flailing, and the Trump supporters are beyond help and reason.




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  63. gVOR08 says:

    OK. Per his previous post James wants nuance. I’ll take a shot here. I agree with the OP. But then a commenter brought Bill into it and James jumped on it. At that point the reaction has to be, “Oh gawd. He whipped out both-sides-do-it again.” I’ll concede some degree of hypocrisy on our part, but does that justify both sides do it, again?

    The stuff didn’t really hit the fan with Clinton until the Lewinsky affair, at which point he was ALREADY President, and doing a fine job of it. With Clinton we were in an impeachment and the bar was whether it constituted “high crimes and misdemeanors”. It was entirely possible to regard Clinton’s consensual conduct with Lewinsky, and the incidental perjury (but by legal technicality not), as reprehensible, which I did, without feeling it was relevant to his performance in office. With Trump we’re in an extended job interview, in which the bar can be that I don’t like his hair.

    These things only take off if they fit the narrative. Trump’s three marriages and numerous affairs were already well documented. His attitude toward women was obvious. This tape was just a slap in the face making it impossible to push it into the background. Trump began his campaign on the escalator with his third trophy wife, who’s only prominent public appearance was her speech at the convention, which only confirmed a blond bimbo narrative. Clinton campaigned on making his very strong wife a partner in the Presidency and did so.




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  64. bill says:

    omg, trump is a heterosexual man…..who knew?

    talk is one thing though, the actions of the clintons make tump look like a saint.
    and then there’s obama talking racist/misogynist here; how have we never seen this before?! oh right, it would have been “racist”……

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WKYmiWiNqOw

    @PJ: seriously, a “woman” who spent her life trashing other women for banging her husband?! whatever happened to that “i’m not a stand by your man type”? oh yeah, the money was better than her morals…..like she ever had much to begin with. and like it or not, trump never trashed a 12 yr old rape victim to get his client off…..no pun intended.




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  65. bk says:

    @James Joyner:

    Bill Clinton was credibly accused of rape and certainly committed multiple acts of sexual assault.

    Show your work.




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  66. michael reynolds says:

    @bill:

    Shut up you creep, don’t tar me with your brush. I’m a heterosexual man, and I didn’t talk this way about women when I was 18 in 1972. This is a 59 year-old man, just a few years ago, a man who wants to be president.

    Maybe you think sexual assault is okay, I don’t. And believe it or not, Bill, I’ve never grabbed ’em by the pussy.




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  67. James Joyner says:

    @CSK: No, it certainly wasn’t “private” by any normal standards. In the spirit of generosity, though, Trump hasn’t been “normal” in decades. His life has been a reality TV show since long before “The Apprentice.” Regardless, I was using “private” in the sense of “a conversation not intended for public broadcast” vice live on CNN.

    @Jen: Oh, I fully agree with that. I’m again doing the nuance thing—taking a narrow point in isolation from the larger context. I don’t watch much talking head TV these days and really haven’t in more than a decade. So I don’t really know much about Navarro or anything about her interlocutor. I’m just addressing the point about what’s appropriate for a CNN telecast with the kids watching.




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  68. grumpy realist says:

    @James Joyner: Why shouldn’t you take the “grab them by the pussy” line literally? Because you think it’s too crude for men to do and no one would do it?

    Wake up, James. Look at Trump’s behavior with his daughter at the convention. Hands all over her hips. If he does that, do you really think he has the self-control to not grab a woman’s crotch when he feels like it?




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  69. PJ says:

    @bill:

    trump never trashed a 12 yr old rape victim to get his client off…..

    Nah. Trump gets off on 13 year olds.

    An anonymous “Jane Doe” filed a federal lawsuit against GOP presumptive nominee Donald Trump last week, accusing him of raping her in 1994 when she was thirteen years old. The mainstream media ignored the filing.

    Remember how Ivanka made him promise to not date anyone younger than her? When she was 17.




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  70. Blue Galangal says:

    My husband was in the army for 14 years and I can’t count the number of dining ins, dining outs, company barbecues, and post-Hash blitzes I attended in the 80s and 90s. I can safely tell you that I never, ever heard even the drunkest PFC talk about “grabbing a woman by her p***y.” There were a lot of variations of “I’d hit that” that ranged from lewd to downright explicit and “look at that [rear]/look at those [front]” and even some pretty funny talk about oral sex (lots of fixation on oral sex among these guys… someone should do a study).

    My husband, who clearly had much more exposure than me to male-only bonding rituals, including both Airborne and Ranger school, can also tell you he has never heard another guy say such a thing. While it’s possible this is the kind of thing that, I don’t know, football players say in the locker room, for a large swath of “red blooded American males,” it is NOT something they say routinely even at their drunkest and locker-roomiest.

    It is deeply offensive and scary to hear such a phrase being “normalized” as something “all guys say.” That is not nuance. That deserves an exhibit of its very own in the Misogynist Hall of Fame.

    From my own perspective, to hear it, it sounds like Trump is actually recounting his own experience/approach to women.




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  71. gVOR08 says:

    @michael reynolds:

    My own personal bet is that this is oppo, not an accident, and Hillary has more.

    My bet is that there is a binder at Hillary HQ with something to leak or release against Trump under October date tabs and that it’s been in place for months. There is also a yuuge, well cross indexed data base of video and quotes. Kaine’s debate performance turns out to have been part of a plan that had a very professional and effective ad on the air the next morning. We find that Hillary’s campaign has been sandbagging, hoarding cash for the last three weeks. They have a big ground game.

    Trump is going to go into Sunday’s debate ready to kill Hillary with Bill’s conduct and oblivious to the probability that Hillary has had a devastating response locked and loaded for months. The response includes pulling this video out of the “Debate -2” folder. I can always be surprised. I have been several times in this election. But I think we’re about to see a team of very good professionals take a gang of relative amateurs apart.

    This I suspect will make it an 8-10 point race.

    Hillary’s right that she should be up by 50. (I’d say 46, 73 – 27.) But in our current state of polarization, you’re probably right. But these days 8-10 is a freaking landslide. Last night some pro was saying 7 might get us the House. By “us” I mean sanity.




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  72. James Joyner says:

    @grumpy realist: @Blue Galangal: It’s a truly bizarre turn of phrase and certainly not one I’ve ever heard in a locker room or barracks. It certainly seems to convey a true misogyny rather than merely crude sexism. I just leave room for the possibility that it was some bizarre, macho hyperbole rather than an admission of actual criminal conduct.




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  73. CSK says:

    @Blue Galangal:

    Let me be quite blunt here: I can’t imagine any woman happily climbing into the sack with Donald Trump just for the pleasure of his, uh, company. I would not find it at all difficult to believe that any sex he’s gotten he’s either bought or taken by force. There was nothing ever attractive (physically, mentally, or spiritually) about him, even in his younger days, and now he’s simply grotesque.

    His first wife may have discerned something lovable in him. But I’m willing to bet the two subsequent ones married solely for money.




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  74. dxq says:

    “I’ve got to use some Tic Tacs, just in case I start kissing her,” Trump says in the leaked tape. “You know I’m automatically attracted to beautiful — I just start kissing them. It’s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don’t even wait. But don’t worry, Billy Bush, that’s just bizarre, macho hyperbole you can dismiss, I don’t actually do this stuff I’m admitting to privately.”




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  75. James Joyner says:

    @CSK: Always my presumption as well. But he wouldn’t be the first rich guy to rent a beautiful woman.

    @dxq: I think the parts you quote are almost certainly indicative of his actual behavior. It’s clearly sexual assault as we understand it in 2016. Probably not as we understood it in 2005. We’ve moved in the right direction–but we’ve moved. (See the earlier update and Chris Matthews’ comments.)




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  76. stonetools says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    Broderick is but one name that has come up. There’s also Kathleen Wiley, among others. The point is that we are told that accusations of rape and sexual assault ought to be believed, so why didn’t that apply to the accusations made against WJC?

    Sigh. I can understand a non lawyer like James making this mistake. But Doug, you are a lawyer.

    No one-apart from the feminist fringe, maybe-is saying that accusations of sexual assault ought to believed, in the sense of being accepted as true. What they are saying is that they should be taken seriously. That means the the prosecuting authority should investigate these allegations, gather evidence, and go forward if there is a case. In the cases of Boderick and Willey, the prosecutor-who had every interest in going forward-investigated these allegations, weighed the evidence, and decided not to go forward. Given that in our system, the accused has the presumption of innocence (remember THAT?) , WJC must be considered innocent.
    Now this is first year law school stuff, Doug. I assume you know this , but are looking at things through your ideological goggles. Time to take those googles off and look at things anew.




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  77. CSK says:

    @James Joyner:

    Oh, indeed. Rich gargoyles have been buying beautiful young women (and beautiful young men, for that matter) forever.

    The salient point about this is that Trump feels compelled to talk incessantly about how many women he’s bedded, how many women hurl themselves at him, how insanely desirable he is. Non-stop. Constantly. That’s just one indicator that there’s something seriously wrong with this man.

    The late Patrick Dennis had a marvelous line in Genius: “In America, sex is like money. Those who really have it don’t talk about it.”

    I suspect Trump has much less money and much less sex than he wants us to believe.




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  78. Just 'nutha ig'rant cracker says:

    @Kari Q: Is it possible that this is the male equivalent of the Patsy Schroder “she’s not some big haired trailer park woman” moment? I ask because I worked in a (blue collar) workplace where the most common terms used to identify females were c**t, snatch, tail, b***h, and the ever popular pussy. The outrage from the boys in the club is not over the attitude but rather that he has identified himself with guys like my coworkers by his language.

    I mean, come on, doesn’t he have any standards at all?




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  79. James Joyner says:

    @Just ‘nutha ig’rant cracker: Well, no. The phrase “grab ’em by the pussy” is one I’ve never heard in my fifty years. “Pussy” is mostly used—and, indeed, I’ve used it myself in this way—as an insult aimed at males failing to live up to a masculine ideal. (Often but not always jokingly.) It’s much less frequently used as an object, usually using some form of the verb “to get.” I have yet to hear it described as an object of grabbing.




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  80. Gustopher says:

    @James Joyner: “Bill Clinton was credibly accused of rape and certainly committed multiple acts of sexual assault. That was disqualifying.”

    I have never heard of Bill Clinton being accused of sexual assault, other than in the depths of the right wing fever swamp. If there was anything serious there, I think it would have gained traction, given how hard it has been pushed.

    It’s very clear that Bill Clinton was (and may still be) a womanizer, but there’s nothing credible to suggest that he ever abused women.




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  81. BrooklynDave says:

    @Gustopher: I think this whole “abuses women” thing comes from the right wing’s feelings that 1) chasing women is inherently wrong (even if they do it also), and 2) jealously that Bill Clinton was so much better at it than the vast majority of them (and that he just might have been able to seduce one of their wives!).




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  82. grumpy realist says:

    @Gustopher: Yep, as I mentioned in the other thread, that’s the reason I think accusations of Bill Clinton being a rapist never got much traction: the accusations were being brought forth by the same crew that was claiming Hillary had killed Vince Foster. When you’ve already shown you’re beyond the tin-foil insanity horizon and accelerating, it’s no wonder that your rantings get dumped in the circular file.

    The reason this recent tape is hitting so hard is because almost all women will have a story to tell about being groped or otherwise sexually assaulted by a leering lout of a guy who wouldn’t take no for an answer, indeed thought he had a right to just reach out and fondle a woman. Especially we women are remembering the groping done by those higher up in the pecking order, who did what they wanted because they knew we couldn’t complain about it.




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  83. valloken says:

    @Hal_10000:

    HAHAHA!

    Because I’m sure that it never occured to Trump or those who support him just who would be killed with this reinstated death penalty.

    Hilarious. This is why black people in this country aren’t safe. Using the case as a springboard to reinstate the death penalty was because he was stirring up the specter of black men roaming the streets of New York raping and killing.

    But hey see it how you want. Believe me when I tell you those of us who are actually in the crosshairs of this hate don’t see it that way.

    Your so called nuances are getting us killed.




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  84. Barry says:

    @Hal_10000: “PS – And you have to wonder: if this is what’s coming out on October 7, what the hell is still out there?”

    Considering that Clinton set up Cosmo with the Miss Universe story long before the first debate, it’s clear that her opposition researchers have done their jobs[1].

    I’m willing to bet that they’ve got a numbe of bombs in the racks waiting for the bombsight crosshairs to line up.

    [1] Unlike 99% of the media, who are worthless at finding out unsurprising things that a celebrety says on tape.




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  85. Ratufa says:

    @James Joyner:

    I think the parts you quote are almost certainly indicative of his actual behavior. It’s clearly sexual assault as we understand it in 2016. Probably not as we understood it in 2005.

    I suspect that a majority of women in 2005 would consider unwelcome sexual contact from an self-entitled lech like Trump to be a form of sexual assault, even if the prevailing ethos at that time did not.




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  86. gVOR08 says:

    @James Joyner: Despite years in the military, you seem to have led a sheltered life. But your point stands.




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  87. Franklin says:

    My two cents … I’m with James here. I guess I assumed Trump spoke like that behind closed doors, so it’s not a big surprise. I was apparently mistaken that everybody else assumed the same thing.

    I’m reserving judgment as to whether he is actually admitting to what we now correctly consider to be sexual assault. He’s always been a big talker, so … maybe?




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  88. grumpy realist says:

    @Franklin: Considering that some of the accusations out there against Trump contain instances of just this behavior, yeah, he was probably bragging about stuff he had actually done.

    “Look how rich and powerful I am! I can abuse women and GET AWAY WITH IT!!”

    THAT’S what he’s bragging about. It’s a dick-measuring contest, but with power as what’s getting pulled out.




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  89. Mikey says:

    @bill:

    trump never trashed a 12 yr old rape victim to get his client off

    Neither did Hillary. The story she did is false.




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  90. Pylon says:

    @PJ: Trump admitted at one point to ogling a 12 year old Paris Hilton.




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  91. Monala says:

    @bill: Obama was doing a public reading from the text of a novel – yet somehow that’s comparable to Trump’s own attitudes.




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  92. An Interested Party says:

    James and Doug, as well as bill, are all using the same excuse as Trump–“It’s no big deal or but, but Bill Clinton!” Even if any of their claims were true, Hillary Clinton is running for the presidency, not her husband…anyone who tries to diminish Trump’s despicable behavior or tries to bring up Bill Clinton in some warped way to diminish Trump’s despicable behavior is fighting a losing battle and deserves nothing but scorn and ridicule…




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  93. gVOR08 says:

    The point to the old saw about the straw that broke the camel’s back is that the last straw isn’t obvious in advance.




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  94. michael reynolds says:

    @Blue Galangal:

    I grew up on army posts, and worked in the restaurant biz which is not exactly known for its devotion to chivalry or decorum, but the only place I heard anything this crude was in the Contra Costa County jail 37 years ago. This isn’t ‘locker room,’ it’s ‘county lock-up.’




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  95. wr says:

    @michael reynolds: “And they have to figure out how to square their alleged Christian beliefs with a man who just months into his third trophy wife is off chasing married women. ”

    Jerry Fallwell Jr has already said that it doesn’t matter if Trump is not a moral man, he’ll appoint conservative Supreme Court justices. I only hope all these quotes come out next time any of these pseudo-religious hypocritical scumbags start criticizing a Democrat for being insufficiently godly…




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  96. Hal_10000 says:

    @valloken:

    Because I’m sure that it never occured to Trump or those who support him just who would be killed with this reinstated death penalty.

    Oh I’m sure it did. Did you read what I said? Trump’s op-ed stoked a hysteria. He knew what he was doing. And he still claims the CP5 were guilty despite one of the clearest exonerations I’ve ever seen (there’s a great Ken Burns documentary on the case). He knows what he’s doing now. All I said was that it was a pet peeve of mine to claim that Trump called for the CP5 to be executed. He didn’t.




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  97. anjin-san says:

    @James Joyner:

    Certainly, Bill Clinton went a lot further than merely talking about sexual assault

    Who are you getting this from – Jenos & JKB? Guess we just can’t have anyone from the right talking about the Clintons without at least a side order of cray-cray.

    As for “locker room talk”? Here are hypothetical examples of want locker room talk is – and lets adjust it for Trump’s wealth and celebrity:

    “You can’t believe what women do when they think you will put them on a tv show” or “It’s a done deal when they see that jet with my name on it”.

    Trump is talking about something else altogether. He can do what he wants to women, and they have no say in it. He has all the power, they have none. This is not “boys will be boys”, this is rape culture.




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  98. Just 'nutha ig'rant cracker says:

    @michael reynolds: Funny you should mention that. The company that I worked for where that kind of talk was normalized (although my coworkers didn’t usually say “grab ’em by the…” they used a hand sign) had large numbers of guys that occasionally did a day or three in the county lock up on drunk and disorderly.




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  99. Just 'nutha ig'rant cracker says:

    @wr: It won’t matter; the fact that the Democrat is both immoral and appointing liberal justices will provide enough cover.

    Providing the outcome that they want is the great equalizer in RWCNJ moral equivalence.




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  100. DrDaveT says:

    @James Joyner:

    It’s clearly sexual assault as we understand it in 2016. Probably not as we understood it in 2005.

    You’ve said that a couple of times now, James. Where the heck were you living in 2005, that hadn’t yet gotten the message? When I took my current job in 2000, the mandatory new employee training was quite clear that nonconsensual kissing isn’t even borderline — it’s waaaaay over the line.




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  101. JohnMcC says:

    It’s been remarked on several times that Mr Trump used a strange sounding turn of phrase several times in the now well-known audio. I don’t think I’ve ever heard a guy say ‘came onto her like a bitch’ or ‘grab her by the pussy’. And I’m of an age with Mr Trump and like him had a period of infatuation with the Hefner/Playboy ‘philosophy’ and at intervals through my life have been in locker rooms to put on jock straps with a serious intent (not golf!).

    I came very quickly to the conclusion that the real target of his talk was not the women but the younger man with him. Trump was very new to the reality-show genre and Mr Bush was well established in ‘show business’. Mr Bush was also a scion of the Presidential Bush family (a nephew of ‘Poppy’ and cousin of ‘Dubya’) — which explains the odd reference to ‘don’t fall out of the bus like Gerald Ford’ as they were descending from the door. It seems to me that DJT was pursuing his never-ending quest to put himself over the supposedly higher social ranking clique that had never accepted him in Manhattan real estate and society.

    Michelle Goldberg of Slate magazine had the same thought on an MSNBC interview Fri night.

    The stilted language supposedly ‘proving’ Mr Trump’s primate dominance over woman-kind was a mechanism to elevate him as an Alpha above the Beta that would be Mr Bush.

    I’d bet that DJT is actually very uncomfortable in masculine places like locker rooms and such. He’s over-compensating for his own self-doubts.




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  102. Kylopod says:

    @Hal_10000:

    I think it’s just the straw that broke a very stubborn camel’s back

    Not really. As I said in another thread a couple of weeks ago, it’s all about timing. If this had come out in the summer, I don’t think it would have had any more impact than the Gold Star family or insulting the judge’s heritage. It would have been something that dominated news coverage for a period of time during which his poll numbers would tank, and then after the media moved on to the next thing, he would begin to gain ground again. What makes this likely to stick is because it’s so close to the election, so there probably isn’t time for him to recover.

    And that pretty much sums up the race. To paraphrase what he said at the beginning of the year, he could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue and it wouldn’t matter unless he did it close enough to Election Day that the voters and media who have about the attention span of Dory the Fish would still have it in their mind by the time they enter the ballot box.




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  103. Zachriel says:

    @gVOR08: The stuff didn’t really hit the fan with Clinton until the Lewinsky affair, at which point he was ALREADY President, and doing a fine job of it… With Trump we’re in an extended job interview, in which the bar can be that I don’t like his hair.

    The Republicans were attempting to undo Clinton’s election, something reserved to the people, except in extraordinary circumstances. Orange skin or “sexual relations with that woman” are matters for the people to decide, not Congress.




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  104. James Joyner says:

    @An Interested Party: I don’t know how you’d read this post as supportive of Trump. The whole point of it is that we already knew he was a misogynist and womanizer who treats women as disposable commodities.

    Someone else in the thread brought up Bill Clinton. Bill Clinton is also an abuser of women, who used his power as governor and president to have his way with women who were in vastly subordinate power positions. I thought that disqualified him from the presidency. I think it also disqualifies Trump. The difference is that Clinton was otherwise qualified and Trump wasn’t.

    As to Hillary Clinton, I have serious misgivings about her. Her husband’s sexual history is not among those, in that she was presumably the victim. (I say “presumably” because I don’t know the nature of their private understanding of permissible conduct. But she was certainly a victim in the sense of being embarrassed by it.) I have some qualms about the way she went after her husband’s victims and accusers but don’t much hold those against her, given the damned if you do, damned if you don’t position in which she was placed.




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  105. Tyrell says:

    @gVOR08: Everyone I talk to and happen to over hear discussing the election are highly displeased with the choices. Both parties seemed to have tanked out and hit the basement as far as the starting team goes. Time to rebuild the farm systems and hope for some better starters in a few years. Also an opportune time for a third party start up.
    I would like to see the system go to the procedure of independently electing the vice president. I know that idea may sound crazy.




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  106. gVOR08 says:

    @Tyrell:

    Everyone I talk to and happen to over hear discussing the election are highly displeased with the choices.

    You talk to me on this site and I’m quite happy with Hillary.




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  107. anjin-san says:

    @James Joyner:

    who used his power as governor and president to have his way with women who were in vastly subordinate power positions.

    Really? Do you have any evidence that say, Monica Lewinsky did not throw herself at Clinton? After all his considerable charisma is well documented. Now that’s not to say that the fact he was President was not part of the attraction, but can you produce any evidence that his approach to Lewinsky was “listen here young lady, I am the most powerful man in the world, and it would be unwise for you to refuse me what I want”?

    Yes, Clinton has a track record of adultery. He humiliated his wife in front of the whole world. He brought this behavior into the White House, displaying terrible judgement and lack of restraint. But I am not buying that he put the screws to women or got physical with them to have his way. I think Clinton loves women and has a hard time resisting them, and they feel the same way about him.




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