Alicia Machado is the star of a sex tape who duped Hillary Clinton into using her as a political wedge, Donald Trump blasted to followers in an early morning Twitter barrage on Friday.
That claim appears to be stretching the truth, several news outlets have claimed.
Machado had emerged as the viral star of last Monday’s first presidential debate, the former Miss Universe winner who claimed to be the subject of racist and misogynistic abuse from Donald Trump after she put on some weight after winning the crown. Hillary Clinton brought Machado up when the subject turned to Trump’s history with women, an apparent trap for the Republican nominee.
Clinton’s team had a full media blitz at the ready, with pre-taped segments ready to use Machado as an attack against Trump and a way to reach both women and Latino voters.
But there have been several rumors about the pageant winner’s past emerging in the days after the debate, including rumors that Alicia Machado appeared in a sex tape.
That was the rumor Donald Trump seized on in his Friday morning Twitter tirade.
Trump accused Hillary Clinton of showing poor judgment by putting forward Alicia Machado without knowing about her sex tape.
“Did Crooked Hillary help disgusting (check out sex tape and past) Alicia M become a U.S. citizen so she could use her in the debate?,” he wrote.
But the truth about Alicia Machado’s sex tape isn’t as simple as that. While the former Miss Universe winner has appeared in the Mexican Playboy two different times and did have a steamy but censored scene on a Spanish reality show, the claims that she appeared in a more explicit video appear to be false.
Radar Online reported that in 2005, Machado was a contestant on a show called La Granja VIP, which put celebrities together to work on a farm. During the show, Machado hooked up with a co-star on camera, the report noted.
“On one episode, Machado and costar Fernando Acaso were caught having sex on camera, PeopleenEspanol.com reported. According to reports, they knew the camera were rolling but continued their raunchy romp.”
It’s not clear if that is the sex tape Donald Trump referred to in his 4:00 a.m. tweet, but there have been rumors floating about a different kind of adult video featuring Alicia Machado. A number of outlets have claimed that she appeared in an XXX adult movie, with several sites reportedly advertising her appearance. The right-leaning Daily Caller was among the news outlets claiming Machado could be seen in the explicit adult movie, and it spread on social media among Donald Trump followers.
But the claims of an overtly explicit sex tape for Alicia Machado appear to be false. Politico noted that “the Daily Beast and other outlets that investigated the claim found no evidence that she has starred in any pornographic films and that the clips posted online actually feature another woman.” Snopes also analyzed the pictures of the woman in the sex tape, showing that it was not Alicia Machado.
And in an analysis of the incident from the Spanish reality show, Snopes noted that the footage was grainy and the scenario possibly contrived for cameras, meaning it would hardly qualify as a “sex tape.”
While Donald Trump could have been referencing the other sex tape of Alicia Machado, it may not matter much. The Republican nominee has been roundly criticized for his insistence to push the issue and defend his criticism of calling her “Miss Piggy” after Machado gained weight. A number of Republican advisers have also called on Trump to back off the line of attack, which could sink his standing with women voters even lower than it had been before.
[Featured Image by Alicia Machado/Instagram]