Tags: gillibrand | trump | tweet | bully | sexist

Gillibrand: Trump a 'Bully,' Tweet Was a 'Sexist Smear'

("Today")

By    |   Wednesday, 13 December 2017 09:56 AM

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand Wednesday rejected the White House's claim that President Donald Trump's tweet against her was not meant in a sexual manner, saying that's how she and many others read his message.

"Certainly, that's how I and many people read it, and it was certainly just a sexist smear intended to silence me, and I'm not going to be silenced on this issue," the New York Democrat told NBC's "Today" anchor Savannah Guthrie, who had asked her if she believed Trump had said she would trade sexual favors for campaign cash.

She also said she considers Trump to be a "bully."

"He has been attacking different people across this country since he's been president and since the Women's March," said Gillibrand. "Women have stood up, have fought hard and spoken out about their beliefs and have not stopped. So I think that is a testament to this election and because of it, I have hope for this country."

On Twitter Tuesday, Trump called Gillibrand a "lightweight" and "a total flunky for Chuck Schumer," the Senate Democratic leader, before adding that she "would come to my office 'begging' for campaign contributions not so long ago (and would do anything for them)."

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders later in the day said anyone who believed Trump's tweet was meant in a sexual manner had their minds "in the gutter," and claimed that it was instead a rebuke on Washington's culture of campaign contributions. 

The tweet came after Gillibrand and other Democratic lawmakers made a call for Trump to resign over accusations from several women who have accused him of sexual harassment or abuse.

Gillibrand said Wednesday that she's heard testimony from many accusers, and she does believe Trump should resign.

"I think Congress should do an investigation because we need accountability, and women aren't going to be silenced right now," she said. "Just saw in Alabama, women are not going to be silenced, African-American women are not going to be silenced, and they came out in numbers."

Gillibrand further told Guthrie that even though Trump's tweet came after her attack, but she doesn't think his level of discourse is what the country wants.

"I think what he has done is unacceptable, and if you put that in the context of multiple accusers who have accused him of sexual assault and sexual harassment, that are credible, you need accountability," she said. "I think what people do want is accountability and he should resign. And if he's unwilling to, Congress should investigate."

Meanwhile, Trump won the presidency despite the women's accusations and the release of an audio tape in which he described grabbing women, but Gillibrand said at this moment of time, with the "Me Too" movement, things are different.

"Women are feeling the ability to tell what happened to them, some of the worst moments they've lived, and tell it publicly, and that is powerful," she said. "it is affecting everything, and people are looking for justice.

"You are seeing quick justice, whether it's in Hollywood or in corporate America or in Congress, and so what we can do is make sure that we continue to speak out and that's what women are doing and they're speaking out in the millions across this country."

She also lauded Doug Jones, the winner in the race for Alabama's Senate seat against Republican Roy Moore.

"You have to put this in context, 50 years ago, four little girls were killed by the KKK and Doug Jones was the prosecutor who brought them justice," said Gillibrand. "I think this was an election about what we feel and our values and what we care about.

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Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand Wednesday rejected the White House's claim that President Donald Trump's tweet against her was not meant in a sexual manner, saying that's how she and many others read his message.
gillibrand, trump, tweet, bully, sexist
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2017-56-13
Wednesday, 13 December 2017 09:56 AM
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