Donald Trump has a sketchy history when it comes to sexual misconduct claims, but that didn’t stop the president from taking aim at the #MeToo movement that has sought to empower victims of sexual abuse.
In a 2020 presidential campaign rally in Montana, the president had some mocking words for the movement that has arisen in the past year as women and men have spoken out against their sexual abusers. He worked the criticism into the latest attack on Senator Elizabeth Warren, who Trump mockingly called “Pocahontas” for her previous claims that she had Native American ancestry. As CNN noted, Trump suggested that she take a DNA test, then worked in a dig at the #MeToo movement.
“We’ll take that little kit and say, we have to go it gently because we are in the Me Too generation, and we will very gently take that kit, slowly toss it [to her],” Trump said.
As the CNN report noted, Trump’s dismissal of the #MeToo movement comes just after his hiring of former Fox News executive Bill Shine, who was forced out of his role with the network amid allegations that he covered up sexual harassment allegations. The same day, Trump also spoke out in defense of Republican Congressman Jim Jordan, who is accused of overlooking rampant sexual abuse against wrestlers at Ohio State University, where Jordan was an assistant coach.
Previously, Trump had campaigned for Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore, who was accused by several women of aggressively pursuing them when he was in his 30s and the women were in their early teens. Some of the women also accused Moore of inappropriately touching and kissing them.
Many of Trump’s critics seized on the comments from the Montana rally, noting that Trump himself has been accused of sexual misconduct by close to two dozen women. Most of the women came forward during the 2016 campaign, saying that Trump forced unwanted kisses on them, with some saying he groped them as well. USA Today even published a rundown of all the accusers, with the accusations spanning several decades.
Others noted that Donald Trump had plenty of energy to attack Democrats and the #MeToo movement in the campaign rally, but had only good things to say about Russian President Vladimir Putin, who American intelligence agencies say directed a campaign to interfere in the 2016 presidential election.
Trump has arranged a meeting with Putin in the coming weeks, which has drawn criticism that Trump is coddling a hostile foreign leader rather than rebuking him for the election interference.