WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump on Tuesday disparaged Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand as someone who once “would do anything” for campaign contributions — among other personal insults he lobbed after she called for his resignation over multiple accusations of sexual assault.
The tweet was a “sexist smear,” Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) responded.
She had told CNN on Monday that Trump should resign because the allegations he faces are credible and numerous.
Trump defended himself by attacking her.
“Lightweight Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, a total flunky for Chuck Schumer and someone who would come to my office ‘begging’ for campaign contributions not so long ago (and would do anything for them), is now in the ring fighting against Trump,” he posted. “Very disloyal to Bill & Crooked-USED!”
“Crooked” is his nickname for Hillary Clinton.
He also tweeted that more than a dozen allegations of sexual misconduct against him are “fake news” on par with probes into collusion between his inner circle and Russians looking to influence the 2016 election.
The president said the accusers are “women who I don’t know and/or have never met,” even though they include an “Apprentice” contestant and a former business partner.
Gillibrand fired back after he singled her out.
“You cannot silence me or the millions of women who have gotten off the sidelines to speak out about the unfitness and shame you have brought to the Oval Office,” she tweeted.
Then she told reporters on Capitol Hill: “It was a sexist smear attempting to silence my voice, and I will not be silenced on this issue.”
Asked to characterize her interaction with Trump in seeking a contribution, she said, “He was just a supporter.”
Asked whether she begged, she rolled her eyes.
She also said the investigation demanded by women in Congress is “the right thing to do,” adding that “all these allegations should be investigated.”
Trump donated $4,800 to Gillibrand’s Senate campaign in 2010 and $3,150 to her House re-election campaign in 2007, Federal Election Commission records show. His daughter Ivanka Trump donated $2,000 to Gillibrand’s Senate campaign in 2014.
Before she called for Trump to step down, Gillibrand led the charge of Democratic senators to successfully urge the resignation of Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) amid allegations of sexual misconduct against him. Last month, she said President Bill Clinton should have left office after news of his affair with Monica Lewinsky went public in 1998.
Senate Democrats came to Gillibrand’s defense Tuesday.
“He lashes out at women and doesn’t seem to be able to control his impulses,” Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) tweeted.
“The President’s tweet today was nasty & unbecoming of a president,” Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) posted.
White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said that anyone who read sexual innuendo into Trump’s tweet has their mind “in the gutter.”
She said there’s “no way” the post was sexist. “If you look back at past comments that this president has made, he’s used that same terminology many times in reference to men,” she said.
A search of Trump’s tweets reveal none with him saying someone “would do anything” for contributions, though he has portrayed people as “begging.”