Presidential elections have seen their fair share of late season scandals and this one is no different. Both candidates have had their share of scandals throughout their campaigns, but they have managed to keep them from damaging their run for office.
While Clinton is dealing with more hacked emails and leaks, it seems to have had little effect on her campaign. This is in stark contrast with what is happening with her Republican rival’s campaign.
On Oct. 7, a recording of Donald Trump and former Access Hollywood anchor Billy Bush making lewd comments about women was leaked by the Washington Post.
The video, recorded by Access Hollywood cameras, was filmed in Sept. 2005 in the parking lot of NBC Studios while Trump was preparing to film his appearance in a daytime soap opera.
While wearing microphones, Trump discusses how he attempted to seduce Billy Bush’s then co-anchor, Nancy O’Dell, who has since released a statement. He also comments on her looks.
He then makes comments that imply that he has forced himself on women he finds attractive. “You know I’m automatically attracted to beautiful—I just start kissing them. It’s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don’t even wait. And when you’re a star, they let you do it, you can do anything,” said Trump.
The release of the video has led to the firing of Bush from the Today Show and a fall in the polls for Trump.
In the first polls taken after the, Clinton had a double digit lead over her opponent. Republicans have had various responses to the leak. While some dismissed the vulgar comments as “locker room talk,” many have condemned the vulgar comments.
In a statement, his running mate, Governor Mike Pence, said, “I do not condone his remarks and cannot defend them.” Former Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice, along with other prominent Republicans, announced that they would not support him in November.
A few of those who endorsed or supported him have even asked for him to drop out of the race. “I thought supporting the nominee was the best thing for our country and our party. Now, it is abundantly clear that the best thing for our country and our party is for Trump to step aside and allow a responsible, respectable Republican to lead the ticket,” said Representative Martha Roby in a statement.
After the release of the tape, Trump made a qualified apology, but refused to drop out of the race. Trump told The Wall Street Journal that there is “zero chance I’ll quit.”
Kelly Oxford, author and social media star, tweeted her memory of her own sexual assault at age 12 which mirrored the comments made by Trump. Others followed her example and tweeted about moments they were grabbed or touched inappropriately.
In response to those describing his comments as condoning or boasting about sexual assault, Trump dismissed the comments as “things that people say.” “If you look at Bill Clinton, far worse. Mine were words and his was action,” stated Trump.
Prior to the second presidential debate, Trump held a press conference with women who accused former President Bill Clinton of sexual assault. He also invited them to sit in the audience of the debate.
During the debate, Trump was asked whether or not he actually groped women, and he said no. However, since the debate, nearly a dozen women have accused Trump of sexual assault or misconduct.
Meanwhile, a judge has ordered a December hearing for charges of rape of a minor against Trump according to The New York Daily News. Trump will have to testify under oath.
Trump immediately slammed the claims and insisted he was the victim of baseless accusations. As the accusations began to roll in, one of Clinton’s accusers who stood beside Trump has expressed sympathy for his alleged victims.
Juanita Broddrick stated in an interview with Jake Tapper, “If any possibility of these accounts being true then I express my sympathy to the women, that y’know that anything might’ve happened to.”
With the state of the Trump campaign and with the number of people jumping ship, it is safe to say that this is one of the most appropriate times for the “life comes at you fast” meme.