Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump flatly denied during the presidential debate on Sunday that he had ever engaged in the sort of aggressive sexual behavior he detailed during a 2005 taped conversation with Billy Bush, at the time an “Access Hollywood” host.
“Are you saying that ... you did not actually kiss women without consent or grope women without consent?” debate moderator Anderson Cooper asked, referring to what Trump can be heard saying in audio The Washington Post published Friday.
Trump stumbled, and Cooper repeated the question: “Have you ever done those things?”
“Women have respect for me, and I will tell you: No, I have not,” Trump replied, adding, “I’m going to make our country safe.”
Yet a review of legal records, investigative reporting and Trump’s own books reveal that the GOP nominee has behaved in precisely the way he denies ― kissing and groping women without their consent ― since at least the 1970s.
Below is a brief summary of what some women have reported about Trump.
In May, The New York Times quoted Temple Taggart, who had been a contestant in a Trump-owned beauty pageant.
“He kissed me directly on the lips,” the 1997 Miss Utah USA told the publication. “I thought, ‘Oh my God, gross.’ He was married to Marla Maples at the time. I think there were a few other girls that he kissed on the mouth. I was like ‘Wow, that’s inappropriate.’”
Trump refuted Taggart’s account, telling the Times that no such interaction had occurred ― and moreover, that he was reluctant to kiss strangers on the lips.
In the newly released tape, however, Trump can be heard saying just the opposite.
“I’ve got to use some Tic Tacs, just in case I start kissing her,” Trump says before meeting a woman. “I’m automatically attracted to beautiful — I just start kissing them. It’s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don’t even wait.”
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