- Steve Pope/Getty Images
Donald Trump’s presidential campaign signaled Wednesday its strategy for combating allegations of sexual misconduct against the Republican nominee: fight fire with fire.
More specifically, the campaign reportedly said it would seek to paint former President Bill Clinton “as Bill Cosby,” the same day multiple women accused Trump of making unwanted sexual advances toward them.
Cosby has been charged with sexual assault and is set to go on trial next year.
“She’s led a program of victim intimidation,” Trump campaign CEO Steve Bannon told Trump staffers of Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, two advisers who were present told Bloomberg. “This has nothing to do with consensual sexual affairs and infidelities. This is Bill.”
Bannon elaborated: “We’re going to turn him into Bill Cosby. He’s a violent sexual predator who physically abuses women who he assaults. And she takes the lead on the intimidation of the victims.”
Trump on Sunday held a press conference with three women who have accused Bill Clinton of sexual misconduct. That news conference came right before the second presidential debate and two days after the leaking of a 2005 recording in which Trump bragged that he could grope women and kiss them without consent because he was “a star.”
The three Clinton accusers who spoke with reporters – Juanita Broaddrick, Paula Jones, and Kathleen Willey – all sat near the front of the debate afterward.
With less than a month to go until Election Day, a Trump adviser told Bloomberg “we’re gonna go buck wild.”
The goal, according to Bloomberg, is for the Trump campaign to suppress the vote of millennial women, who they believe will be unable to vote for the Hillary Clinton after their case is made against her husband.
The campaign said it would soon bring forward additional, new accusers.
“Women are coming to us who have been groped or sexually abused by Bill Clinton,” a senior adviser said.
Deputy campaign manager David Bossie, known for running Citizens United, told Bloomberg that Trump’s campaign now had the “opportunity to introduce new material into the campaign to educate voters on how they treat women.”
On Thursday, one of Trump’s biggest backers, Fox News personality Sean Hannity, will host an hourlong special on the network with the three women who appeared alongside Trump before Sunday’s presidential debate.
After the Bloomberg story broke, Angel Urena, the former president’s press secretary, responded on Twitter:
Donald Trump is more interested in playing out his reality TV show on a national stage than he is in leading the country into the future.
— Angel Ureña (@angelurena) October 13, 2016
“His show should be titled A Race To The Bottom,” Urena added.