We knew this Donald Trump all along
Republicans are shocked -shocked! -- about Donald Trump’s caught-on-tape remarks boasting in vulgar terms about sexual assaults on women.
GOP Sens. John McCain, John Thune, Kelly Ayotte, Mike Lee, Mark Kirk and Mike Crapo, two Republican governors and a dozen or more GOP members of the House either said they won’t support Trump or called on Trump to quit, while many others, including Trump running mate Mike Pence, expressed their disgust.
What was on the 2005 video tape, first reported by The Washington Post’s indefatigable David A. Fahrenthold, was beyond what we’ve known before of Trump — that he grabs the genitals of women without their consent and tried mightily to seduce a married woman. But it’s worse only by degrees. If this is the straw that broke the camel’s back, this dromedary was already overburdened and suffering from arthritis, spinal stenosis and ruptured disks.
Republicans may be dismayed by the super-predator they saw and heard in the video, but they have no business being surprised. What’s on that tape is entirely consistent with what we already knew.
Even before this tape emerged, we knew that his wife Ivana accused him at the time of their divorce of raping her (Trump’s lawyer asserted that there is no such thing as spousal rape). We’ve seen complaint after complaint about his lewd behavior on set at “The Apprentice” and at his Miss Universe pageants.
But while people can question the he-said, she-said allegations against Trump, it’s harder to dispute the meaning of his own words.
Here, for the benefit of those Republicans feigning surprise about Trump’s video, is a partial catalogue of reported remarks Trump has made about women — remarks which, by embracing Trump as the GOP presidential nominee, office holders in the party have already condoned:
Avoiding STDs “is my personal Vietnam. I feel like a great and very brave soldier . ... This is better than Vietnam. It’s more fun.”
To a lawyer who needed to take a break during a deposition to pump breast milk for her infant daughter: “You’re disgusting.”
To “Celebrity Apprentice” contestant Brande Roderick: “It must be a pretty picture. You dropping to your knees.”
To Cher: “I promise not to talk about your massive plastic surgeries that didn’t work.”
A retweeted message: “If Hillary Clinton can’t satisfy her husband what makes her think she can satisfy America?”
Of Carly Fiorina: “Look at that face. Would anyone vote for that? ... Can you imagine that, the face of our next president?”
For women who have abortions: “There has to be some form of punishment.”
Of former Miss Universe Alicia Machado: “Miss Piggy.” “Miss Housekeeping.” “Check out sex tape and past.”
On the Miss America competition: “There’s only one talent you care about, and that’s the look talent.”
But that’s just the problem: If you don’t think the words in that video reflect exactly who Donald Trump is, you haven’t been paying attention.