Photo by THE ASSOCIATED PRESS                                Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., attends a news conference, Tuesday, Capitol Hill in Washington. Gillibrand says President Donald Trump’s latest tweet about her was a ‘sexist smear’ aimed at silencing her voice.

Photo by THE ASSOCIATED PRESS Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., attends a news conference, Tuesday, Capitol Hill in Washington. Gillibrand says President Donald Trump’s latest tweet about her was a ‘sexist smear’ aimed at silencing her voice.

Trump says senator ‘would do anything’ for cash

WASHINGTON — Pushing into the sexual harassment debate, President Donald Trump laced into Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand on Tuesday, tweeting that the New York Democrat had begged him for campaign contributions in the past and “would do anything” to get them. Democrats accused the president of comments that were crude and worse.

Gillibrand, D-N.Y., who had called for Trump’s resignation a day earlier while citing allegations of sexual misconduct, called Trump’s attack a “sexist smear attempting to silence my voice.”

“I will not be silenced on this issue,” Gillibrand insisted. “Neither will the women who stood up to the president yesterday,” referring to women who have accused the president of sexual misconduct.

The Democrats were badly misreading the president’s comments, said Trump spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders. “There’s no way” his tweet was sexist, she said, and only people with their minds in the gutter would read anything sexual into it.

Standing up for Gillibrand, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., tweeted to the president: “Are you really trying to bully, intimidate and slut-shame @SenGillibrand? Do you know who you’re picking a fight with? Good luck with that, @realDonaldTrump. Nevertheless, #shepersisted.”

The phrase “she persisted” went viral earlier this year after Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell silenced Warren in the chamber as she tried to read a letter from Coretta Scott King about Attorney General nominee Jeff Sessions.

Trump’s tweet Tuesday did not directly address sexual harassment, but said of Gillibrand: “Lightweight Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, a total flunky for Chuck Schumer and someone who would come to my office “begging” for campaign contributions not so long ago (and would do anything for them), is now in the ring fighting against Trump. Very disloyal to Bill & Crooked-USED!”

A day earlier, Gillibrand said Trump should resign because there were credible accusations against him. And barring that, she said, “Congress should investigate the multiple sexual harassment and assault allegations against him.”

Trump’s tweet Tuesday morning inflamed Democrats who said the president was again debasing a woman. Trump had not responded to earlier resignation calls from three male senators, Independent Bernie Sanders of Vermont and Democrats Cory Booker of New Jersey and Jeff Merkley of Oregon.

Hours later, Hawaii Sen. Mazie Hirono also called for the president to step down, declaring that Trump’s “tweet against Kirsten was just another example of his misogyny.”

“He is a liar. He is an admitted sexual predator and the only thing that will stop him is his resignation,” Hirono said. “He not only owes Kirsten an apology, he owes an apology to our entire country, particularly the women in this country.”

Rep. Eric Swalwell, D-Calif., called it “an ugly and suggestive tweet, and we all know what he was trying to say there, and it is beneath the office of the presidency.”

The criticism of Trump largely came from one side of the aisle. Republicans largely remained silent about the tweet, with Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake, a frequent Trump critic, being an exception, saying he “didn’t think it was appropriate at all.”

More than a dozen women came forward during last year’s campaign, many in the wake of the “Access Hollywood” tape in which Trump is heard bragging about committing sexual assault, to say that the celebrity businessman had harassed them.

With each day seeming to bring new headlines that force men from positions of power, four of Trump’s accusers re-upped their claims Monday, believing the national movement on sexual harassment should force change at the White House too.

Trump has denied the claims. In a heated exchange with reporters in the White House briefing room on Monday, press secretary Sanders steadfastly dismissed accusations against the Republican president and suggested the issue had been decided in Trump’s favour on Election Day.

Sanders also promised that the White House would provide a list of eyewitnesses and corroborating evidence to exonerate Trump. Nearly 24 hours later, the White House sent along an email that, citing news reports that quote witnesses, offered rebuttals to two of the accusations.

Trump donated $4,800 to Gillibrand’s Senate campaign in 2010, according to federal campaign finance records. Before launching his presidential campaign, Trump frequently bestowed donations on politicians of both parties.

Donald Trump

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A nurse gets a swab ready at a temporary COVID-19 test clinic in Montreal, on Friday, May 15, 2020. Health Canada has reversed course on home test kits for COVID-19, saying it will now review applications for such devices. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
Alberta declines Ontario’s request to send health-care workers

Alberta is “not in a position” to send health-care workers out of… Continue reading

The Red Deer Rebels allowed four straight goals from the Medicine Hat Tigers Friday night on the road. (Photo by Rob Wallator/ Red Deer Rebels)
Tigers hand Red Deer Rebels 10th straight loss

Tigers 4 Rebels 2 Through 17 games in the shortened WHL season,… Continue reading

Meghan Huizing has been selected by Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools as a finalist for the Alberta School Boards Association (ASBA) 2021 Edwin Parr Award. (Photo courtesy of Red Deer Regional Catholic Schools)
Red Deer Catholic names finalist for Edwin Parr Award

Meghan Huizing from St. Gregory the Great Catholic School in Blackfalds has… Continue reading

GrammaLink-Africa members are participating in the Stride to Turn the Tide campaign until June 30. (Contributed photo)
Red Deer group walking to raise money for African grandmothers

A group of central Albertans will be walking every day until the… Continue reading

Red Deer Public Schools will not pilot the new draft curriculum at its elementary schools. (File photo contributed by Red Deer Public Schools)
UPDATED: Red Deer Public Schools says no to piloting new curriculum

Alberta Teachers’ Association support school boards

Montreal Canadiens' Tyler Toffoli celebrates his goal past Calgary Flames goaltender Jacob Markstrom during second-period NHL hockey action in Montreal on Friday, April 16, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
Toffoli scores twice, Canadiens put some distance on Flames with 2-1 win

Toffoli scores twice, Canadiens put some distance on Flames with 2-1 win

Canadian prop Jake Ilnicki savouring life in Seattle, looks forward to facing Arrows

Canadian prop Jake Ilnicki savouring life in Seattle, looks forward to facing Arrows

Corey Conners, of Canada, hits out of a bunker on the seventh hole during the final round of the Masters golf tournament in Augusta, Ga., Sunday, April 11, 2021. Conners notched six birdies on his back nine to take the lead after his second round of the RBC Heritage on Friday. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Matt Slocum
Canadian Corey Conners surges into lead at PGA Tour’s RBC Heritage

Canadian Corey Conners surges into lead at PGA Tour’s RBC Heritage

Patrick Marleau poised to break Gordie Howe’s games record

Patrick Marleau poised to break Gordie Howe’s games record

Leylah Annie Fernandez of Canada serves to Marie Bouzkova of the Czech Republic in round 1 of the Rogers Cup women's tennis tournament in Toronto, Monday August 5, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Mark Blinch
Rebecca Marino propels Canada into 2-0 lead over Serbia at Billie Jean King Cup

Rebecca Marino propels Canada into 2-0 lead over Serbia at Billie Jean King Cup

Dalton Kellett pulls out of the pits during a practice session for the Indianapolis 500 auto race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, in Indianapolis, Thursday, Aug. 13, 2020. Dalton Kellett is pleased his second career season in IndyCar will be different than his first, which started on an elaborate iRacing rig in his home office in Indianapolis because of COVID-19 restrictions. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Darron Cummings
Canada’s Dalton Kellett set for a more stable season as an IndyCar driver

Canada’s Dalton Kellett set for a more stable season as an IndyCar driver

Canada head coach Bev Priestman reacts during the women's international friendly soccer match between England and Canada at Bet365 stadium in Stoke on Trent, England, Tuesday, April 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Rui Vieira
Canadian women get peek at their possible road at Olympic soccer tournament

Canadian women get peek at their possible road at Olympic soccer tournament

Head coach John Tait talks to his team as Canada takes on Japan in women's sevens rugby action at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on Saturday, Aug. 6, 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Rugby Canada says probe into complaint from members of women’s 7s team is complete

Rugby Canada says probe into complaint from members of women’s 7s team is complete

Most Read