Donald Trump weighed in on the scandal engulfing movie mogul and Democratic funder Harvey Weinstein, accused by multiple women of sexual harassment (Weinstein has been fired from his company). “I’ve know Harvey Weinstein a long time. I’m not at all surprised to see it,” Trump said.
Trump was subsequently asked by CNN’s Elizabeth’s Landers how Weinstein’s conduct differed from the conduct Trump bragged about on the “Access Hollywood” tape, where he said “when you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything. Grab ’em by the pussy. You can do anything.” Trump responded that the tape was just “locker-room talk.”
Rubbish. It wasn’t just “locker-room talk.” At least 15 women have publicly accused Trump of sexual harassment and assault, and People Magazine Natasha Stoynoff has six independent witnesses to back up her allegation that Trump “pushed her against a wall, shoved his tongue in her mouth, and told her they were going to have an affair.”
Trump is actively assaulting women in other ways. The Trump administration’s Education Department has moved to make it harder for women at universities to prove sexual harassment. Trump’s Health and Human Services Department has made it harder for women to get contraceptives. Trump has nominated 32 men and just one woman to become U.S. Attorneys. Trump’s 2018 budget calls for a 93 percent cut in funding for federal programs that aid survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence.
Trump and Weinstein are both sexual harassers and predators. But Trump is also president of the United States. That makes him even more dangerous to women.
This post originally appeared at RobertReich.org.
Robert B. Reich is the chancellor’s professor of public policy at the University of California, Berkeley and former secretary of labor under the Clinton administration. Time Magazine named him one of the 10 most effective Cabinet secretaries of the 20th century. He is also a founding editor of The American Prospect magazine and chairman of Common Cause. His film, Inequality for All, was released in 2013. Follow him on Twitter: @RBReich.