Donald Trump spent the early morning hours of Friday attacking Alicia Machado with accusations of a scandalous sex tape. But Trump has admitted to watching Paris Hilton's sex tape in the past, so he should probably know the difference.
The so-called "tape" however was an appearance on a reality TV show that was aired on Spanish television in a show called “La Granja,” in 2005. Think about the blanket-covered scenes in "Big Brother" as a comparison. A sex tape, however, is generally a tape that couples film of their own graphic sexcapades that somehow gets leaked to the public. This was far from what Machado's appearance on the TV show was and Trump should know better.
Trump supporters passing around the video are promoting it as some sort of evidence that Machado is an unreliable source to discuss the objections Trump had about her weight. In an interview with Anderson Cooper Wednesday, Machado explained that she has a complicated past and certainly isn't a saint. She hopes, however, that it doesn't diminish the footage of Trump forcing her to work out in front of the media while telling them, "she weighed 118 pounds, or 117 pounds, and she went up to 160 or 170. So this is somebody who likes to eat."
Trump is, himself, a reality TV star, though he has never done a scene similar to Machado. Thankfully. He has seen Paris Hilton's sex tape, however. In a 2015 report from the Daily Beast, Trump admitted that he and his then-girlfriend eagerly watched Paris Hilton's grainy video together.
“Now, somebody who a lot of people don’t give credit to but is in actuality very beautiful is Paris Hilton,” Trump told shock jock Howard Stern. “I’ve known Paris Hilton from the time she’s 12, her parents are friends of mine, and the first time I saw her she walked into the room and I said, ‘Who the hell is that?’ At 12, I wasn’t interested… but she was beautiful.”
Trump thought that Hilton was hot when she was just 12 years old then watched her sex tape while she was 23-years-old and he was 58-years-old. That's the same interview where Trump went on and on about how attractive his own daughter Ivanka is. She was 21-years-old at the time. He also later said that he wouldn't mind dating her.
The checkered past Trump alluded to in his other tweets, and his surrogates are talking about, refers to an incident where Machado might have helped her former boyfriend escape his sister’s funeral in Venezuela in 1997. The boyfriend, Juan Rodriguez, had apparently just shot his brother-in-law and claimed that he had driven his sister to commit suicide, according to Politifact.
The other conspiracy theories, that Clinton somehow helped Machado get her citizenship so that she could use Machado in her campaign against Trump is not only unfounded but would have needed years and years of preparation to accomplish. Trump only announced his intention to run for president a year and a few months ago.
In all of these attacks on Machado, however, not once has Trump denies calling her names or attacking her for her weight. His surrogates have consistently said "there's no proof of that" in cable news shows, but they can't refute it and Trump hasn't. Instead, he doubled down on Tuesday about Machado in a Fox News interview and now attacks her with slut-shaming as a way to prove she isn't a reliable source.