Words can sink campaigns, while Trump’s actions fuel his support
The verdict in the E. Jean Carroll case against Donald Trump was a momentous win for survivors of sexual assault, as well as women who have suffered due to lack of belief in their claims. The jury found that Trump sexually abused Carroll and awarded her $5 million for battery and defamation. Although the jury didn’t find that Carroll proved rape, it still marked a significant victory. As a former president, Trump enjoys considerable goodwill with GOP voters, despite scandals that would have doomed most politicians. However, as his legal woes increase and primary debates begin in August, his support will be tested.
This ruling marks a new chapter in the #MeToo movement, which has empowered survivors to come forward with their stories. The verdict demonstrates that no one is above the law, not even a former president of the United States. In his response to the verdict, Trump stated that he plans to appeal the decision, calling it a “disgrace” and a “political witch hunt”. However, this should not detract from the fact that this ruling sends a powerful message to survivors of sexual assault and shows that justice can be served.
Trump’s legal troubles continue to mount, with probes in New York, Washington, DC, and Georgia still underway. His willingness to deny allegations and call the case against him a political witch hunt undermines the bravery and courage of those who speak out about their experiences of sexual assault. As a presidential candidate in 2016, Trump faced backlash for comments made on the “Access Hollywood” tape, in which he bragged about sexually assaulting women. Despite this, he managed to survive the scandal and go on to win the presidency. However, as the Carroll case has demonstrated, times have changed, and Trump’s actions are finally catching up with him.
The ruling against Trump is a momentous win for survivors of sexual assault and women who have suffered due to a lack of belief in their claims. It sends a powerful message that no one is above the law, and that justice can be served. Trump’s continued denial of the allegations against him undermines the bravery and courage of those who speak out about their experiences of sexual assault. It remains to be seen how this case will affect Trump’s popularity, but it’s clear that his support will be tested as his legal woes continue to mount. (AI)
A short history of gaffe disqualifiers
In the 2016 US presidential campaign, Hillary Clinton referred to some of Donald Trump’s supporters as “a basket of deplorables,” causing controversy and backlash. Clinton later apologized for the comment, but it was used by her opponents to paint her as elitist and out of touch with working-class voters.
During a 2012 presidential debate, Mitt Romney claimed to have received “binders full of women” as part of his effort to hire more women for his cabinet. The phrase was criticized as insensitive and objectifying, and became a memorable moment of the election.
(It was Tina Fey playing Sarah Palin on Saturday Night Live who paraphrased Palin’s foreign policy on Russia)
In a 2008 interview, Sarah Palin, the Republican vice presidential candidate, claimed that Alaska’s proximity to Russia gave her foreign policy experience. She stated, “You can actually see Russia from land here in Alaska.” The remark was widely mocked as evidence of her lack of foreign policy expertise.
In a 1999 interview, Al Gore stated that he “took the initiative in creating the Internet”. While he played a key role in supporting legislation that helped fund and develop the internet, his comments were widely criticized as an exaggeration of his contributions, leading to the popular misquote “I invented the internet”.
(The infamous Howard Dean Scream)
In 2004, Howard Dean was a presidential candidate and during his campaign, he gave an impassioned speech after a disappointing result in the Iowa caucuses. At the end of the speech, he let out a loud, guttural scream that was dubbed the “Dean Scream”. The moment was widely parodied and criticized, and is considered a major factor in his campaign’s ultimate failure.
(Rick Perry’s Oops Moment)
In a 2011 Republican presidential debate, Rick Perry forgot one of the three government agencies he wanted to eliminate, famously stating “Oops” when he couldn’t recall the third. The moment became a defining moment of his campaign and is often cited as one of the most memorable debate gaffes in recent political history.