Last night, new allegations of sexual misconduct directed at Donald Trump were almost hard to keep up with. Women, who just recently decided to go on the record with their stories, talked to a variety of news outlets about their alleged experiences, and each of the stories are worth considering in detail.
Here's the New York Times report
, the Palm Beach Post report
, and the People
, each featuring accounts that have not yet been verified by MSNBC or NBC News. There's also this NBC News report
on allegations from a former participant in the 1997 Miss USA pageant.
As Rachel emphasized
on the show, as of last night, the Republican candidate and his campaign team emphatically denied the accuracy of each of the claims. Because many of the incidents involve actions that may have taken place several years ago, it will be difficult to know with certainty what did and did not occur between Trump and his accusers.
As for the politics of all of this -- the allegations surfaced with just four weeks remaining until Election Day, with early voting in some states already underway -- one of the unusual facets to these developments is the order in which they unfolded.
Late Friday, we learned that Trump was recorded in 2005 boasting about his romantic exploits
, which eventually led him to brag about committing sexual assaults. The Republican presidential candidate said, among other things, that he kisses women he considers beautiful -- "I don't even wait
," Trump claimed -- which he said he can get away with because of his public profile.
"And when you're a star, they let you do it," Trump said on the recording. "You can do anything. Grab 'em by the p—y."
Two days later, Americans saw this exchange
between Trump and Anderson Cooper at the second presidential debate:
COOPER: So, for the record, you're saying you never did [the things you described in 2005]?
TRUMP: I've said things that, frankly, you hear these things I said. And I was embarrassed by it. But I have tremendous respect for women.
COOPER: Have you ever done those things?
TRUMP: And women have respect for me. And I will tell you: No, I have not.