These are the 15 women who have accused Donald Trump of sexual misconduct
"Trump is a rapist." This statement is the rallying cry for the feminist anti-Trump crowd. But is it true? Donald Trump has been accused by many of his detractors of sexism and it's still debated as to whether or not the US President holds misogynist views. This perception of Trump became more prevalent after the infamous 2005 Billy Bush tapes were leaked to the press. In a taped recording, Trump allegedly confessed to habitual non-consensual groping and other forms of sexual harassment, stating: "I don’t even wait. When you're a star, they let you do it. You can do anything... Grab 'em by the p*ssy. You can do anything."
Indeed, Trump's apparent endorsement of rape culture, (which was dismissed by his apologists as locker room banter) alarmed a lot of people. After all, just what did Trump mean when he said you could do "anything?" Indeed, a cursory inquiry into Trump's past relationships with women reveals a scandalous history of lawsuits and private settlements. The following list reveals the full charges levied against Trump by the 15 women who believe themselves to be his victims.
1. Jill Harth
Make-up artist Jill Harth sued Trump back in 1997, alleging that he had repeatedly sexually harassed her. In a 2016 interview with British newspaper The Guardian, she stated that Trump had groped her under a table, while the two of them were dining with contestants for a 1992 beauty pageant. Harth stated Trump "pushed me up against the wall, and had his hands all over me and tried to get up my dress” at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Springs, Florida. Harth later dropped the suit after her partner George Houraney settled a different lawsuit against Trump over prior business transactions.
2. Bridget Sullivan
Former Miss New Hampshire and runner-up for Miss USA 2000, Bridget Sullivan, alleged in 2016 that Trump would routinely walk in on beauty pageant contestants while they were changing in their dressing rooms, describing him as a "creepy uncle" who had groped her. "The time that he walked through the dressing rooms was really shocking. We were all naked." In response, Trump campaign spokesperson Hope Hicks claimed that Sullivan's recollections of Trump's conduct were “totally false”.
3. Cassandra Searles
In 2013, Miss Washington 2013 winner Cassandra Searles claimed that as a pageant judge Trump had repeatedly abused his authority. She wrote in a Facebook post: "Do y’all remember that one time we had to do our on stage introductions, but this one guy treated us like cattle and made us do it again because we didn’t look him in the eyes? Do you also remember when he then proceeded to have us lined up so he could get a closer look at his property? Oh I forgot to mention that guy will be in the running to become the next President of the United States. I love the idea of having a misogynist as the President." She also claims to have been repeatedly groped and solicited for sex by Trump.
4. Tasha Dixon
In a 2016 interview, former Miss Arizona winner Tasha Dixon made allegations which corroborated with Searles and Sullivan, claiming that Trump would routinely walk in on the contestants while they were "half naked changing in our bikinis … There was no second to put a robe on or any sort of clothing or anything." Dixon states that she was 18 at the time of these transgressions. Trump's campaign later released a statement in response, claiming: "These accusations have no merit and have already been disproven by many other individuals who were present. When you see questionable attacks like this magically put out there in the final month of a presidential campaign, you have to ask yourself what the political motivations are and why the media is pushing it."
5. Jessica Leeds
In a 2016 interview with The New York Times, former sales rep Jessica Leeds claimed that when she shared a flight with Trump he "started grasping me and pulling me and groping my breasts and trying to kiss me." Leeds was apparently left to fend for herself on the plane with Trump when the cabin crew left him to his own devices and also stated that: "When he started to put his hand up my skirt that I managed to wiggle out, because I’m not a small person. And I also managed to remember my purse and went to the back of the airplane." Leeds claims that when she encountered Trump three years later at a charity gala in NYC, he verbally abused her.
6. Rachel Crooks
Rachel Crooks claims that, when she was a 22-year-old receptionist working in the Trump Tower, Trump forcibly kissed her without her permission after she encountered him outside an elevator. Crooks claims that Trump began kissing her cheeks and then on the mouth before she managed to refuse further advances. "It was so inappropriate," she recalled in a 2016 interview, "I was so upset that he thought I was so insignificant that he could do that."
7. Mindy McGillivray
Palm Beach resident Mindy McGillivray claims that at the age of 23, while she was assisting a photographer friend who was documenting a Ray Charles concert at Mar-a-Lago in 2003, Donald Trump forcibly groped her from behind, and was only interrupted from taking things further by the intervention of Melania Trump. "Ray already performed. He’s ready to leave. He’s saying his goodbyes to everyone,’’ McGillivray stated. "All of a sudden I felt a grab, a little nudge. I think it’s Ken’s camera bag, that was my first instinct. I turn around and there’s Donald. He sort of looked away quickly. I quickly turned back, facing Ray Charles, and I’m stunned.’’
8. Natasha Stoynoff
In 2016, journalist Natasha Stoynoff published an essay for People magazine, in which she claimed that Trump "forced his tongue down my throat" during an interview at the Mar-a-Lago resort. She also stated that Trump told her: "You know we’re going to have an affair, don’t you?" In December, Trump claimed that he had never met Stoynoff and in response, People magazine published an image which showed Stoynoff, Donald Trump and Melania Trump together at the Palm Springs resort in 2005.
9. Mariah Billado
Mariah Billado, a former Miss Vermont Teen USA, also claimed that Trump was an unashamed peeping Tom during beauty pageants, stating that he would walk in on young women (some minors) changing, while telling them that he'd "seen it all before." Billado stated in an interview with Buzzfeed News: "I remember putting on my dress really quick because I was like, ‘oh my god, there’s a man in here.'"
10. Temple Taggart McDowell
In 2016, Temple Taggart McDowell, a former Miss Utah for Miss USA, told NBC News that Trump kissed her twice on the mouth at a 1997 pageant. Taggart McDowell also claimed that a pageant chaperone witnessed a second alleged encounter between Trump and her, and advised her not to be alone with Trump again.
11. Summer Zervos
Former Apprentice contestant Summer Zervos alleged in a 2016 press conference that Trump also kissed her without asking for permission when she scheduled a meeting with him at Trump Tower for business advice, and that he later groped her and kissed her “very aggressively” before they ate dinner together on a separate occasion. Trump claimed that Zervos' assertions were libellous, and in response Zervos sued Trump for defamation.
12. Samantha Holvey
In 2016, former Miss North Carolina Samantha Holvey said that Trump would examine contestants for the beauty pageant prior to the event in an extremely objectifying and demeaning way, claiming: "He would step in front of each girl and look you over from head to toe like we were just meat, we were just sexual objects, that we were not people. You know when a gross guy at the bar is checking you out? It’s that feeling."
13. Karena Virginia
At a 2016 press conference, yoga instructor and lifestyle coach Karena Virginia claimed that Trump had groped her breast when she encountered him outside the 1998 US Open while having her car serviced. "I knew who he was, but I had never met him. He was with a few other men," she stated. "I was quite surprised when I overheard him talking to the other men about me. He said, 'Hey, look at this one, we haven't seen her before. Look at those legs.' As though I was an object, rather than a person. He then walked up to me and reached his right arm and grabbed my right arm, then his hand touched the right inside of my breast. I was in shock. I flinched." When Virginia rebuffed him, Trump apparently asked her: “Don’t you know who I am?"
14. Jessica Drake
Adult film star Jessica Drake claims that Trump invited her to his hotel room when she met him at a charity golf tournament. Drake claims that Trump hugged and kissed her and her two acquaintances without their consent, and that Trump called later to invite her to come to his hotel room alone. When Drake declined, Trump apparently her “what do you want? How much?” and tried to solicit sex from her.
15. Kristin Anderson
In an interview with The Washington Post, Kristin Anderson claimed that Trump groped her genitals when she met him in a Manhattan nightclub. She was in her early 20s and was working as a model at the time of the incident, which allegedly occurred over two decades ago. Anderson said that the group of women were "very grossed out and weirded out," by the incident, but that they had been told that "Donald is gross. We all know he’s gross. Let’s just move on.”
These aren't the only alleged scandals to have dogged Trump's first term as president. For instance, new evidence suggests that Trump paid off an adult star in order to keep quiet about an affair they had back in 2006.