Striking back. Donald Trump came out fighting on Sunday, October 9, less than an hour before the second presidential debate, appearing in a press conference with a group of women who accused former President Bill Clinton of sexual assault — who then joined the Trump family in the audience at the evening’s presidential debate versus Hillary Clinton.
The first of the four women to speak at the conference in St. Louis was Paula Jones, a former Arkansas state employee who accused the then-governor of exposing himself and making an indecent proposition in 1991. Her 1994 sexual harassment suit against President Clinton led to his impeachment in the House of Representatives and subsequent acquittal by the Senate in 1999.
Her case was dismissed but Clinton agreed to a $850,000 out-of-court settlement with Jones in 1998, which included no apology or admission of guilt.
During Sunday’s less than four-minute-long press conference she defended the Republican presidential nominee, who has been embroiled in a scandal since a leaked 2005 video surfaced on Friday that revealed him having a lewd conversation about women with Billy Bush.
“They should all look at the fact that he is a good person,” Jones said. “He is not what other people have been saying he’s being, like Hillary.”
Next to address reporters was Kathy Shelton, who was sexually assaulted at the age of 12 in Arkansas in 1975. Her assailant was defended by Hillary Clinton, and Shelton claimed that Clinton, who was practicing law at the time, “put me through something that you’d never put a 12-year-old through.”
In an interview 10 years later, Hillary Clinton was heard on tape laughing about the procedural details of the case. The audio has since been used by conservative groups to attack the former Secretary of State in her run for the presidency.
Juanita Broaddrick, a former Arkansas nursing home administrator, spoke next and claimed that Bill Clinton raped her and Hillary Clinton threatened her. She alleges the incident occurred in Little Rock in 1978 during his gubernatorial campaign. She sued Bill Clinton in 1999 but the case was dismissed three years later.
The final woman to speak was Kathleen Willey, who worked as a volunteer at the White House and said President Clinton sexually assaulted her in the Oval Office in 1993. (A charge he has denied.) Wiley also claimed that Hillary Clinton tried to discredit her. The Associated Press reports that her accusation has never been independently verified by a judge or jury and the former New York senator has declined to address the accusation.
All four women later attended the second presidential debate in St. Louis on Sunday night.
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