Trump campaign issues statement after 2 women come forward with “inappropriate touching” allegations


NEW YORK — Donald Trump campaign administrators fired back Wednesday after the New York Times published an article detailing the experiences of two women who claim the Republican nominee touched them inappropriately in the past.

According to the Times, Jessica Leeds, 74, and Rachael Crooks were at a loss for words while watching Tuesday night’s presidential debate where Trump admitted to bragging about grabbing and touching women without permission but said he had never actually done so.

Leeds and Crooks have come forward to prove that couldn’t be any further from the truth, the Times article suggested.

Leeds told the Times she and Trump were strangers more than three decades ago when she was sitting next to him during a first-class flight to New York and he grabbed her breast. According to the report, 45 minutes into the flight, Trump lifted the armrest between them and began touching her. She said Trump even tried to put his hand up her skirt.

“He was like an octopus,” Leeds told the Times, “His hands were everywhere.”

Crooks said she was a 22-year-old receptionist at a real estate investment and development company inside Manhattan’s Trump Tower in 2005 when she encountered Trump outside an elevator.  When she went to introduce herself to Trump, she said they shook hands but he wouldn’t let go. The Times reports he then made an advance at Crooks — kissing her cheeks and mouth.

“It was so inappropriate,” Crooks said. “I was so upset that he thought I was so insignificant that he could do that.”

The Trump campaign issued a statement Wednesday night in response to the allegations saying, “This entire article is fiction, and for the New York Times to launch a completely false, coordinated character assassination against Mr. Trump on a topic like this is dangerous. To reach back decades in an attempt to smear Mr. Trump trivializes sexual assault, and it sets a new low for where the media is willing to go in its efforts to determine this election.”

“It is absurd to think that one of the most recognizable business leaders on the planet with a strong record of empowering women in his companies would do the things alleged in this story, and for this to only become public decades later in the final month of a campaign for president should say it all.”

“Further, the Times story buries the pro-Clinton financial and social media activity on behalf of Hillary Clinton’s candidacy, reinforcing that this truly is nothing more than a political attack. This is a sad day for the Times.”