Donald Trump patted himself on the back for refraining from discussing Bill Clinton’s sex scandals at the first presidential debate on Monday, but his surrogates have taken every opportunity to bring them up in the days since.
The campaign seems intent on using the issue to deflect attention from Trump’s attacks on the weight and appearance of former Miss Universe Alicia Machado, which Hillary Clinton brought up at the tail end of the debate. Clinton also released a video touting an endorsement from Machado in which the former beauty queen recounts how Trump called her “Miss Housekeeping” and “Miss Piggy.”
In an interview on “Fox and Friends” on Wednesday morning, Trump’s deputy campaign manager, David Bossie, said that “clearly Mr. Trump held his tongue” after Clinton mentioned his pattern of making derogatory comments about women during the debate. Calling Clinton an “enabler” of her husband’s affairs, Bossie said she deserves scrutiny for “really attacking these women” in the 1990s.
Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge (R), a Trump supporter, spent the entirety of a Wednesday interview on MSNBC refusing to respond to questions about the Machado dustup and instead criticizing the Democratic nominee’s “treatment of women.”
Given that polls show Clinton with a consistent lead among women and that women take issue with Trump’s past negative remarks about them, host Craig Melvin asked Rutledge for proof to back up her claim that female voters thought Clinton was “not a good role model.” Rutledge said she would be “happy to provide the information” later on.
Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who is currently on his third marriage, spearheaded this line of attack on Tuesday, saying Trump should have spoken about what Clinton “did to Monica Lewinsky” during the debate.
According to Giuliani, Clinton’s decision to stand by her husband rendered her “too stupid to be president.”