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‘His hands were everywhere’: Two women abused by Trump speak out about assaults

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Two women have spoken on the record to the New York Times about times when Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump took advantage of them sexually.

Former paper industry sales executive Jessica Leeds, 74, and former receptionist Rachel Crooks both told the Times that Trump groped them without their consent, manhandling their breasts and genitalia.

Leeds said that she had the misfortune of sitting next to Trump in a first class plane cabin on a flight to New York. About 45 minutes after takeoff, Trump lifted the arm rest between their seats and began to try to fondle Leeds’ breasts and vagina.

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“He was like an octopus,” she said. “His hands were everywhere.”

She sought refuge with flight attendants in the back of the airplane.

“It was an assault,” she said.

Crooks said she met Trump outside a bank of elevators in Trump Tower in 2005. When she was introduced to the then-reality TV star, she went to shake his hand, but Trump would not release her proffered hand. Instead he began to kiss her cheeks and then her mouth.

“It was so inappropriate,” said Crooks to the Times. “I was so upset that he thought I was so insignificant that he could do that.”

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When the Times confronted Trump on the women’s allegations, he became “highly agitated.”

“None of this ever took place,” he told a reporter on the phone. He then began to shout incoherently and accuse the newspaper of having a vendetta against him. He said if the Times printed Crooks’ and Leeds’ stories, he would sue.

“You are a disgusting human being,” he told the reporter before angrily hanging up.

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After Trump: No free pass for Republicans — they own this nightmare

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With the impeachment inquiry leveling up this month as public hearings begin, and with an election that might actually be the end of Donald Trump now less than a year away, the campaign to let Trump's Republican allies — even the most villainous offenders — move on and pretend this never happened is already underway.

This article first appeared in Salon.

Sadly, the clearest articulation of the let-bygones-be-bygones mentality has come from a Democrat — unsurprisingly, former Vice President Joe Biden.Biden, who is still, somehow, the frontrunner in Democratic primary polling, spoke at a chi-chi fundraiser on Wednesday, and dropped this pearl of wisdom: "With Donald Trump out of the way, you’re going to see a number of my Republican colleagues have an epiphany."

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Elections 2016

As climate crisis-fueled fires rage, fears grow of an ‘uninhabitable’ California

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As activist Bill McKibben put it, "We've simply got to slow down the climate crisis."

With wildfires raging across California on Wednesday—and with portions of the state living under an unprecedented "Extreme Red Flag Warning" issued by the National Weather Service due to the severe conditions—some climate experts are openly wondering if this kind of harrowing "new normal" brought on by the climate crisis could make vast regions of the country entirely uninhabitable.

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Elections 2016

‘A profound emoluments clause violation’: Andrew Napolitano slams Trump’s hosting the G7 at Doral

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In the wake of acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney's announcement this Thursday that next year's G7 summit will be hosted at President Trump's Doral golf club, Fox News senior judicial analyst Andrew Napolitano pointed out that Trump would be violating the emoluments clause if he were to go through with the move.

At the outset of the segment, Fox Business Network anchor Neil Cavuto said that the announcement is "effectively saying the president has given himself this contract."

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