Responses to Trump's Sexism: 'This Isn't Just About Trump'
President Trump's vile tweets speak volumes about what the GOP allows from its party.
President Donald Trump's vile sexism attacking MSNBC's Mika Brzezinski yesterday has raised questions about just how much the Republican party is willing to let Trump get away with — and about Trump's current state of mind.
The president cannot stop his sexist Twitter habit, describing television host Mika Brzezinski as "low I.Q. Crazy Mika" and "bleeding badly from a face-lift."
Trump described Brzezinski on Twitter as "low I.Q. Crazy Mika" and "bleeding badly from a face-lift." According to deputy press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, Trump had to respond to the "outrageous attacks" against him because he refused to be "bullied."
But on Friday, Brzezinski and her fiancé Joe Scarborough responded in a Washington Post column titled "Donald Trump is not well":
"President Trump launched personal attacks against us Thursday, but our concerns about his unmoored behavior go far beyond the personal. America's leaders and allies are asking themselves yet again whether this man is fit to be president. We have our doubts, but we are both certain that the man is not mentally equipped to continue watching our show, 'Morning Joe.'"
"More significant is Mr. Trump's continued mistreatment of women," the couple added. "It is disturbing that the president of the United States keeps up his unrelenting assault on women. From his menstruation musings about Megyn Kelly, to his fat-shaming treatment of a former Miss Universe, to his braggadocioclaims about grabbing women's genitalia, the 45th president is setting the poorest of standards for our children."
The couple also responded on air on Friday morning.
"He appears to have a fragile, impetuous childlike ego," Brzezinski said.
Lawmakers were quick to comment as well. Media outlets widely reported the response of Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham (S.C.) before anyone else.
"Mr. President, your tweet was beneath the office and represents what is wrong with American politics, not the greatness of America," he tweeted.
Numerous Democratic lawmakers also took to the president's favorite platform to reject his latest sexist banter.
— Rep. Nydia Velazquez (@NydiaVelazquez) June 29, 2017
What Trump tweeted this morning is beneath the office he holds. He's a #cyberbully that is setting a bad example for America's children.
— Linda T. Sánchez (@RepLindaSanchez) June 29, 2017
.@realDonaldTrump's tweets about Mika Brzezinski are reproachful, sexist & show he doesn't understand what it means to have free, open press
— Senator Ben Cardin (@SenatorCardin) June 29, 2017
"Bleeding from the face," another attack on women, really? Enough is enough! Mr. President, you need to resign NOW!
— Sheila Jackson Lee (@JacksonLeeTX18) June 29, 2017
Donald J. Trump: Cyberbully-In-Chief. https://t.co/CuipUgZulk
— Rep. Lois Frankel (@RepLoisFrankel) June 29, 2017
Some also pointed out that once this blows over, the GOP will be quick to defend Trump again, and it will be business as usual.
".@realDonaldTrump's tweets this morning were sexist, vile, and unbecoming of an American leader. What else is new?" questioned Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.).
Democratic Rep. Barbara Lee of California came down hard not only on Trump but the whole GOP in a series of tweets:
This isn't just about Trump. We already knew he has no respect for women. It's also about the GOP – which continues to defend & support him.
— Rep. Barbara Lee (@RepBarbaraLee) June 29, 2017
When leaders are bullies, it's an implicit license to others – sexual harassers, white supremacists, islamophobes – to spread their hate.
— Rep. Barbara Lee (@RepBarbaraLee) June 29, 2017
It's up to everyone to reject this behavior. By not speaking out, my GOP colleagues are complicit in the sexism & bigotry incited by Trump.
— Rep. Barbara Lee (@RepBarbaraLee) June 29, 2017
Nicolle Wallace, former communications director for the White House under former President George W. Bush and chief political analyst for MSNBC and NBC, said the only strategy for the White House is an apology.
"As a woman who was fortunate enough to work in the White House as a public servant, all of the women collecting paychecks from the U.S. taxpayers — Dina Powell, Kellyanne Conway, Elaine Chow, Betsy DeVos — you should all go on the record and condemn your boss' comments, and you should work behind the scenes to educate him about just how offensive they are.
"As someone who once proudly called myself a Republican, the party will be permanently associated with misogyny if leaders don't stand up and demand a retraction," Wallace added.
She also questioned "how any woman who's defending these comments how they plan to raise good men if the most powerful man in the world gets away with this?"
Besides Graham, some Republicans did respond to reject the tweets.
Republican Sen. Ben Sasse of Nebraska called the comments "not normal" and "beneath the dignity" of the president's office. And Rep. Lynn Jenkins (R-Kansas) said, "This is not okay. As a female in politics I am often criticized for my looks. We should be working to empower women."
"I don't believe the President's tweets this morning Make America Great Again," said Rep. Kevin Yonder, also a Republican from Kansas.
However, perhaps unsurprisingly, House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) did not take a strong stance against the tweets, saying only at a press conference that it was not "an appropriate comment."
"What we're trying to do around here is improve the tone, the civility of the debate. And this obviously doesn't help do that," he said.
Ryan has been unable to condemn Trump's hate even before Trump took office, allowing the now-president's outlandish behavior to become the GOP's new normal. Last summer, Ryan said he does not have time to address all of then candidate Trump's racist social media messages. According to Ryan, "Candidates should know that" racist rhetoric has no place in a presidential campaign. He also speculated the blame should fall on Trump's campaign staff rather than the candidate: "My understanding is that this was done by staff, not by he, himself."
At the time Ryan was responding to an anti-Semitic tweet that appeared on Trump's Twitter account.
Meanwhile, Trump's sexism is nothing new. His recent comments echoed previous remarks he made about former Fox anchor Megyn Kelly when he said, "You could see there was blood coming out of her eyes, blood coming out of her wherever." His comment was widely interpreted as a reference to menstruation.
During his campaign he also made disparaging remarks about a fellow candidate's wife — Heidi Cruz, spouse of Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas). And also before Trump was elected, when audio of him saying it's okay to grab women by the genitals, he brushed it off as "locker room talk."
Women may be starting to listen, though, and the GOP will need the support of women on key issues. According to exit polls, women made up 53 percent of all voters, making them the majority. Women voted for then-Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton, 54-41 percent.
However, Trump's approval rating from women has been on the decline. In April, 38 percent of women overall approved of Trump. In a recent CBS News poll, however, only 27 percent of women approved of Trump. Only 23 percent of women ages 18-29 approve of Trump. Similarly, a Quinnipiac University poll found that only 33 percent of women approve of Trump.
"If we don't swear in a new governor until January, what is the rush for you?" Gillum said, referring to Florida Gov. Rick Scott and President Trump.
Florida Republican gubernatorial candidate Ron DeSantis' lead over Democratic candidate Andrew Gillum narrowed to just 33,000 votes on Saturday, resulting in a mandated machine recount of ballots. The results are due in Tallahassee on Thursday, and if Gillum gains about 15,000 votes, a hand recount will take place.
"It's incredible that a president would travel to France for this significant anniversary — and then remain in his hotel room watching TV," David Frum said on Twitter.
Light, steady rain resulted in President Trump cancelling plans to attend a commemoration in France on Saturday to honor U.S. soldiers killed during World War I.
"And for this I'd never forgive him," Obama writes in her new memoir.
Former first lady Michelle Obama is trending on Twitter for what is revealed in her new memoir.
In public speeches, when giving her opinion on the current state of the U.S., Obama never refers to President Trump by name. But in her new 426-page book, "Becoming," she mentions her disdain for Trump.
The artist made it clear on Twitter that she doesn't want her hit song being played.
Rihanna is the latest artist to ban her music from being played at rallies featuring President Donald Trump.
Washington Post White House Bureau Chief Philip Rucker said Sunday on Twitter that Rihanna's hit song "Don't Stop the Music" was playing at a Trump rally in Chattanooga, Tenn., ahead of Tuesday's midterm elections:
It's been said a million times, but here's a million and one — Trump's rallies are unlike anything else in politics. Currently, Rihanna's “Don't Stop the Music" is blaring in Chattanooga as aides toss free Trump T-shirts into the crowd, like a ball game. Everyone's loving it.
— Philip Rucker (@PhilipRucker) November 4, 2018
Rihanna responded to Rucker's tweet:
Not for much longer...me nor my people would ever be at or around one of those tragic rallies, so thanks for the heads up philip! https://t.co/dRgRi06GrJ
— Rihanna (@rihanna) November 5, 2018
Rihanna has sold 124 million digital singles in the U.S., which is 10 million more than any other artist, according to Forbes.
Last month, she turned down an offer by the NFL to headline the 2019 Super Bowl Halftime Show because she stands in solidarity with Colin Kaepernick and NFL players who take a knee.
Soon after, actress Amy Schumer posted on social media that she was turning down a chance to appear in a Super Bowl commercial. Schumer also said it "would be cool" if Maroon 5, scheduled to perform, would reject the offer, like Rihanna did.
Last week, Pharrell Williams sent a cease-and-desist letter to President Trump to stop him from using his music. On the same day as the Pittsburgh synagogue massacre, Trump hosted a Midwest campaign rally where "Happy" was on the playlist.
"There was nothing 'happy' about the tragedy inflicted upon our country on Saturday and no permission was granted for your use of this song for this purpose," the letter states.
At a rally last week for Stacey Abrams, the Democratic candidate in the Georgia gubernatorial race, Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.) was captured on video dancing to "Happy," and it went viral.
"Get it legend."
Get it legend https://t.co/I88GYAFkdg
— Pharrell Williams (@Pharrell) November 2, 2018
Cohen said Trump commented in 2016: "Black people are too stupid to vote for me."
Returned during W's presidency, the murderer was released by Sheriff Joe Arpaio's department.
Thousands protested for the 11 lives lost, the two victims in Louisville, and the many more stifled by President Trump's racism and bigotry.
Trump visited the synagogue on Tuesday and left.
On Wednesday he tweeted, "The Office of the President was shown great respect on a very sad & solemn day. Small protest was not seen by us, staged far away. The Fake News stories were just the opposite-Disgraceful!"
Nearly 70,000 people as of Tuesday signed the petition from the Pittsburgh affiliate of Bend the Arc to demand Trump stay away from Pittsburgh.
Mayor Bill Peduto, a Democrat, had asked Trump to reschedule his visit to respect the grieving families and funerals.
Steven Halle, a nephew of one of the victims, Daniel Stein, rejected a meeting with Trump because of his comments blaming the synagogue for not having an armed guard to stop the gunman "immediately."
"Everybody feels that they were inappropriate," Halle said of Trump's comments. "A church, a synagogue, should not be a fortress. It should be an open, welcoming place to feel safe," he continued.
But Trump didn't care and came for his photo ops, and to promote Republican candidate Keith Rothfus via Twitter:
Yesterday in Pittsburgh I was really impressed with Congressman Keith Rothfus (far more so than any other local political figure). His sincere level of compassion, grief and sorrow for the events that took place was, in its own way, very inspiring. Vote for Keith!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 31, 2018
Trump told Fox News on Monday night:
"I'm also going to the hospital to see the officers and some of the people that were so badly hurt," Trump said. "I really look forward to going. I would have done it even sooner, but I didn't want to disrupt any more than they already had disruption."
But his visit was drowned out by thousands who took to the streets of the city to protest, marching toward the synagogue, singing songs, and holding signs that said, ""Refugees Are Not Invaders," "Pittsburgh Builds Bridges Not Walls" and "Pittsburgh Welcomes All Who Don't Hate."
"It's an unbelievable image that we're looking at. These are peaceful protesters, walking along, grieving about the tragic death of 11 of their neighbors in a synagogue on Saturday, and protesting the presence of Donald Trump, the president, in their community today." pic.twitter.com/AuZbQxIq0o
— MSNBC (@MSNBC) October 30, 2018
Tuesday evening, Tracy Baton, director of the Pittsburgh chapter of the Women's March on Washington, stood on the steps of the Sixth Presbyterian Church and spoke to thousands:
Those who "would insert themselves on a national stage, into a city in mourning, before the dead are buried, is unacceptable," she said. "Those that would limit our neighbors' vote, that would foment hate against the Jewish community, Muslim community, people of color, LGBTQ people, as well as wage a war on women's bodies, are not welcome here!"
Jewish group IfNotNow organized a protest and sat shiva. Organizer and Pittsburgh resident Diana Clarke told the crowd, "We are here to mourn the 11 Jewish people who were killed on Saturday. We are here to mourn the two black people who were
shot by a white nationalist in Louisville, Kentucky, last week."
"I think that Donald Trump represents white nationalism and white supremacy, and that has no place in the mourning lives lost to exactly those systems that his administration upholds," Clarke told HuffPost.
"We have people who can't sit shiva because you're blocking our streets!" the Rev. Susan Rothenberg, a Presbyterian minister screamed at Trump when he arrived. "These people can't grieve! You're causing them pain!"
She continued, "You only care about you! You are not welcome on my street! These are my neighbors that were killed! You are not welcome in Squirrel Hill! Do you understand that?"
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