Michelle Obama calls Trump's words 'shocking and demeaning' to women
Date created :
Michelle Obama said Thursday that Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump's boast on a 2005 tape that his fame allowed him to "do anything to women" had shaken her to the core.
Speaking at a campaign rally in New Hampshire for Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, Mrs Obama called the comments "shocking and demeaning." She also dismissed Trump's claim that the remarks were simply "locker room talk," saying they were an affront to every woman, parent and citizen in United States.
"I can't stop thinking about this. It has shaken to me to my core in a way that I couldn't have predicted," the first lady said. "So while I would love nothing more than pretend that this isn't happening and come out here and do my normal campaign speech, it would be dishonest and disingenuous to just move onto the next thing like this was all a bad dream. This is not something we can ignore."
Mrs Obama said the comments made by Trump are part of his long history of disrespecting women.
"We have a candidate for president of the United States who over the course of his lifetime, over the course of this campaign, has said things about women that are shocking, so demeaning," she said. "I simply will not repeat anything here today. Last week, we actually saw this candidate bragging about sexually assaulting women. I can't believe I'm saying that, a candidate for president of the United States bragged about sexually assaulting women."
Mrs Obama went on to say the comments were forcing women to recollect painful memories of when they were harassed in their offices or sexually assaulted.
"The truth is it hurts. It hurts," she said. "It's like that sick, sinking feeling you get when you are walking down the street, minding your own business and some guy yells out vulgar words about your body or when you see that guy at work that stands a little too close, stares a little too long and makes you feel uncomfortable in your own skin.”
“Maybe we’re afraid to be that vulnerable,” she added. “Maybe we don’t want to believe that there are still people out there who think so little of us as women.”
While she didn't mention her husband, President Barack Obama, she said Trump's comments did not reflect how the men in her family discuss women.
"I can tell you the men in my life do not talk about women like this. I know my family is not unusual," she said adding, "they are loving fathers who are sickened by the thought of their daughters being exposed to this kind of vicious language about women."
Mrs Obama's comments are some of the most forceful of a week in which scores of Republican leaders abandoned Trump after a 2005 video became public in which the GOP nominee is heard bragging about how his fame allowed him to "do anything" to women. Republican New Hampshire Senator Kelly Ayotte, who is in a tight re-election campaign, said over the weekend that she no longer plans to vote for him.
Trump has played down the comments, saying in Sunday night's second presidential debate that he never did anything of the things he bragged about on the tape. In the wake of his claim, The New York Times and the Palm Beach Post reported stories about three women who alleged Trump had made inappropriate and unwelcome advances. Separately, a People Magazine reporter wrote a detailed first-person account of being attacked by Trump while interviewing the businessman and his wife, Melania Trump.
Trump denies the latest allegations.
(FRANCE 24 with AP)