Most women know what it’s like to be approached by a guy like Donald Trump. He’s that guy you spot coming at you from across the party with hands extended and eyes emblazoned by a voracious glare. Certainly his mouth is open a bit, and there’s a drop of predator drool at one edge. To him you are not a woman, but an assemblage of body parts -- mouth, ass, breasts.
At the moment of his approach, he thinks he’s cute. He thinks he’s charming, and that his hands are above average size. You’re just another thing he wants to get his little mitts around on his way to his Nobel Peace Prize.
The relentlessness and predictability of Donald Trump’s assaults on women is the focus of All The President’s Women: Donald Trump and the Making of a Predator, published today by Hachette.
The book is an exhaustive -- and often exhausting -- compendium of the hundreds of women authors Barry Levine and Monique El-Faizy interviewed who claim they were assaulted by the commander-in-chief. Some of the stories, like Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal, are well known. Intrepid reporters Levine and El-Faizy have unearthed 43 more women willing to go on the record, adding to the two dozen who have already described Trump’s alleged attacks.
There are so many, in fact, that the book has a 50-page appendix that is just a partial list of the women he allegedly has molested, and his published denials. More than 200 women!
The monotony of his moves, the boorishness of his quick-feel grabs, describe a man who is anything but slick.
With so many horrific anecdotes one after the other, the through line of the story is not the trauma of any particular woman, but the unrepentant predator. One might imagine a guy as much on the prowl as Donald would be a smooth operator, but reverse is true. One woman described that when he grabbed her genitals it was not exactly erotic, feeling “like someone trying to evaluate ripe fruit at the store.”
Trump Molestation Brand
The monotony of his moves, the boorishness of his quick-feel grabs, describe a man who is anything but slick. The Trump molestation brand, Levine and El-Faizy describe, are his trademark forcible kissing, groping, genital grabbing, and barging in on sleeping women.
In his decades before the White House he was a menace to women everywhere he went. He lied his way into parties to assault models who were only in their teens. He founded a modeling agency and bought a beauty pageant to award himself the right to inspect the merchandise. One Miss California USA entrant described him lining up all the contestants, barely clothed in scanty dance outfits, and walking down the line, notebook in hand, as he gave each an invasive once-over. Couples who held their weddings at Mar-A-Lago might find him chasing their bridesmaids down the hallway, or pulling one behind a tapestry for a quick feel.
He claims the droit de seigneur in his hotels, roaming the halls late at night clutching a master key that allows him into any room. Dancers, models and actresses staying at Mar-A-Lago for an event or performance described waking up in the wee hours to find him standing at their bedsides.
Even if a woman rebuffed him, he’d cop a feel when he held her snug during a group photo, or find a way to let his hand linger on her ass. It was this commonplace assault that had me thinking about all the times this sort of thing has happened to me. My much less powerful predators have something in common with the larger scale ones like Trump, Harvey Weinstein or Charlie Rose. He too believes he is brilliant with an excellent idea about what he wants to do to your body. It’s such an excellent idea, he cannot be persuaded that you don’t agree with him because, after all, his opinion is the only one that matters.
Ivanka's Childhood Bedroom
One woman, interior designer Jill Harth, recounted Trump pouncing on her while they stood assessing Ivanka’s childhood bedroom at Mar-A-Lago for renovations. She was so repulsed by this that she vomited next to Ivanka’s canopy bed. You’d think if a woman hurled her lunch at your touch you’d get the hint. Not Donald. Trump took her disgust as playing hard to get, Harth believed. For weeks afterward he called her begging, “I love you baby. I’m going to be the best lover you’ve ever had… You need to be with me, you need to step it up to the big leagues.” When Trump was trying to persuade a woman whose husband was dying to fly away with him for a weekend he argued that her husband was so near death, “He’ll never notice you’re gone.”
It’s easy to see, even if you are among the few women in North America not molested by him, that Donald Trump is a brute and a boor. So why do we need 300-plus pages of detail? Only his decades-long rampage offers insight into his fitness, or unfitness, for office.
Impeachment is a political judgment. The ways Trump behaves when he gets caught is something we need to be aware of as the walls close in around him. This book shows how, as his businesses crumbled, he got bolder. Some of the wildest episodes took place when his first marriage was exploding and his casinos were going bankrupt.
Free of Guilt and Consequences
Negative publicity has no effect on him at all. If he sees his name everywhere he looks, he’s a happy guy convinced he’s doing great.
Impeachment is also a decision on character. You can see from the bumbling and chaotically aggressive way Trump governs that he brought his same signature moves from the halls of Mar-A-Lago to the Oval Office. He’s older now, though, and he can’t sneak around as deftly as he once did. He’s much easier to catch in the act.
I imagine him in a slovenly bathrobe, covered in fast food grease stains, drooling as he wanders the West Wing trying to figure out how much he can grab in his tiny hands. Everything he sees is his and he gets to do whatever he wants in this world he has constructed that is free of guilt or consequences.
To Trump, America is not so much as a country or an ideal but a collection of resources he can exploit as he arranges access for the high rollers. His name screams at him every morning from the front headlines. The television screens displaying his picture reinforce his certainty that every idea he has is brilliant, especially the bad ones. And he’s just about to win the Nobel Peace Prize.