While an ongoing string of sexual harassment scandals continues to reveal misogynistic behavior of powerful men, from an aging ex-president to Hollywood auteurs, there’s been an elephant in the White House’s Press Briefing Room. On Friday, a CBS reporter asked press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders about the numerous accusations of sexual misconduct leveled at President Trump, and Sanders speedily and unequivocally dismissed all of the claims as lies.
Here’s a transcript of the exchange:
Reporter Jacqueline Alemany: “Sarah, obviously sexual harassment has been in the news. At least 16 women have accused the president of sexually harassing them throughout the course of the campaign. Last week during a press conference in the Rose Garden, the president called these accusations fake news. Is the official White House position that all of these women are lying?”
Sanders: “Yeah, we’ve been clear on that from the beginning, and the president has spoken on it.”
The various claims about Trump’s inappropriate sexual behavior span three decades and include unwanted groping and kissing, entering backstage dressing areas of Trump-owned beauty pageants (a behavior he confirmed in an interview with Howard Stern in 2005), and even what ex-wife Ivana Trump once termed “rape” before backpedaling on that wording during the campaign. But let the record show that White House’s official position is that all of the women making allegations of harassment against the man who said he could “grab them by the pussy. You can do anything.” can be summarily dismissed as liars.