Sanders Has a Very Strange Rationale for Why Trump’s Sexual Assault Claims Don’t Matter

The White House press secretary seems to have forgotten a key recording.

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders on Friday offered a peculiar defense of President Donald Trump’s decision to attack Sen. Al Franken on Twitter over a new sexual misconduct revelation, but remain silent about serious sexual assault allegations against Roy Moore, the US Senate candidate in Alabama. 

“Senator Franken has admitted wrongdoing and the president hasn’t,” Sanders told reporters. “I think that’s a very clear distinction.” 

Trump’s tweets condemning Franken on Thursday drew instant charges of hypocrisy. More than a dozen women accused Trump of sexual harassment or assault during the 2016 campaign. 

Sanders also appeared to argue that media coverage of Trump’s alleged misconduct during the election, and his subsequent victory, showed he was innocent. “The American people I think spoke loud and clear when they elected this president,” she said.

Sanders’ rationale appears to leave out the leaked Access Hollywood recording of Trump from 2005, in which he brags about grabbing a woman’s “pussy” without her consent. Trump admitted to the crude remarks, but said it was harmless “locker room” banter.

On Thursday, the White House continued to dismiss criticism of Trump’s silence regarding Moore, arguing the president has already asked Moore to step aside if the allegations are true. Sanders has repeatedly failed to explain how Trump could establish the veracity of the accounts put forth by Moore’s accusers.

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Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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