Trump Defends Roger Ailes: ‘He Helped Those Women’

GOP candidate insinuates Gretchen Carlson and 20 others are lying about their boss's alleged sexual harassment.

Carlo Allegri/Reuters

Simply put: Donald Trump is a serial defender of men who have engaged in sexual misconduct and is a serial shamer of the female victims who have come forward. There truly should be a special place in hell for men who do this.

The latest episode of Trump’s victim-blaming came Sunday morning when he appeared on NBC’s Meet The Press. There, Trump was asked about Fox News’ Roger Ailes resignation earlier this week after Gretchen Carlson’s bombshell harassment lawsuit and after over 20 other women reportedly came forward alleging sexual misconduct from Ailes.

Trump’s response to the question was simply jaw-dropping. Trump stated that he felt “very badly” for Ailes (not for the women, though). Trump also praised Ailes as a “very, very talented person,” applauding the way he built Fox News into a media powerhouse.

Then Trump started attacking the women who had come forward. “I can tell you that some of the women that are complaining, I know how much he's helped them," he said.

Think about that comment for a moment. Trump is basically saying that since Ailes had helped these women with their careers, the alleged sexual harassment was okay because it was the price to pay for his help.

And then Trump did what he has done for years—he attacked the female victims as liars: “I can tell you that some of the women that are complaining ... when they write books that are fairly recently released, and they say wonderful things about him.

“And now all of a sudden they're saying these horrible things about him.”

The worst thing about this disgusting defense of an alleged serial predator is that it’s hardly the first time Trump has used it.

In 1992 when Trump was asked about his good friend Mike Tyson being convicted of raping Desiree Washington, Trump defended the boxer and maligned the rape victim. He in essence blamed Washington for being raped: “You have a young woman that was in his hotel room late in the evening at her own will.” And then Trump— even though Tyson had already been convicted by a jury—despicably questioned whether Washington was even raped, noting that a video after the incident showed her “dancing with a big smile on her face, looked happy as can be.” Trump then added, “It’s my opinion that to a large extent, Mike Tyson was railroaded in this case.”

Trump even touted Tyson’s endorsement in April during the GOP primaries, telling the audience at a campaign rally in the very same Indiana city where Tyson had raped Washington: "Mike Tyson endorsed me. I love it... when I get endorsed by the tough ones, I like it.”

Trump did the very same thing when defending his then-good friend Bill Clinton against allegations of sexual misconduct in the 1990’s. Trump first mocked the women who had made claims such as Paula Jones with comments like, “I don’t necessarily agree with his victims. His victims are terrible... a terrible group of people.” Trump also ridiculed the physical appearance of the women involved, remarking, “Linda Tripp may be one of the most unattractive human beings I’ve ever seen—not women, human beings.” He added, “The whole group—Paula Jones, Lewinsky—it’s just a really unattractive group.”

After Trump was done maligning the women, he went on to defend Clinton, claiming he was the real victim in this whole ordeal: “He is really a victim himself.” His one point of concession: Trump did call out the former President for his mistake of “put[ting] himself in that position.”

Get The Beast In Your Inbox!

Daily Digest

Start and finish your day with the top stories from The Daily Beast.

Cheat Sheet

A speedy, smart summary of all the news you need to know (and nothing you don't).

By clicking “Subscribe,” you agree to have read the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy
Thank You!
You are now subscribed to the Daily Digest and Cheat Sheet. We will not share your email with anyone for any reason.

That, ladies and gentleman, is Donald J. Trump. A man who will defend men accused of sexual misconduct, and worse, publicly malign the women who have made the claims, from suggesting they are lying to mocking their appearance. Is this really the type of person we want to be the President of the United States of America?