'I just don't believe it,' Trump son says of sexual-assault claims

Eric Trump, the second son of Donald Trump, cast his father as the victim of a smear campaign when asked to respond to numerous new allegations from women, who have said the Republican presidential nominee made sexual advances towards them against their will over the past three decades.

On ABC's This Week, the younger Trump defended his father calling all the women "liars" and of his threats to sue his accusers.

"He believes in a right and wrong, and when he feels that there's injustice, I think you should stand up to ourselves," Eric Trump told programme host George Stephanopoulos. "Quite frankly, he's a great fighter, and he believes in calling out right and wrong."

Stephanopoulos had brought up Donald Trump's speech in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, the day before, in which he vowed to sue all the women who have accused him of sexual assault.

Eleven women have come forward in recent weeks to accuse Donald Trump of groping them, allegations that followed the release of a 2005 Access Hollywood recording in which he bragged about being able to force himself on women because he was "a star".

In broad strokes, Eric Trump dismissed them all.

"George, where were these women before?" he told Stephanopoulos. "It's not like my father's a hidden individual, right? He's one of the most known people in the world."

He went on to imply that Hillary Clinton's campaign had somehow orchestrated the sexual-assault allegations.

"The day that the Hillary WikiLeaks come out, you know, all of a sudden people start coming forward," Trump said. "I think you have to be really naive to think that one and the other weren't coordinated together."

Stephanopoulos asked Eric Trump whether it would be prudent for his father to be mired in such legal suits, if he were to be elected president.

"My father's a guy who will fight," the younger Trump said. "He'll fight for this country. And he's always fought for himself and, quite frankly, throughout this whole process he's needed to fight for himself."

Stephanopoulos pressed Eric Trump on one accusation in particular, that of People magazine writer Natasha Stoynoff, noting that six of her friends and colleagues had since stepped forward to corroborate her story.

"I just don't believe it - and then you come out with that with three weeks left in the election," Trump said flatly. "You know what somebody told me? ... 'Get ready for October. Your family will live through the worst, most unthinkable, hardest month of your lives ... What the Clinton machine will throw at you ...'"


Eric Trump has been a consistent and staunch defender of his father's campaign online and at rallies nationwide, recently suggesting that Donald Trump's lewd recorded conversation with Billy Bush was the product of two "alpha males" getting together.

He has hit the political-show circuit before to stump for his father, recently justifying Donald Trump's 3 am Twitter rants on Fox News.

When Stephanopoulos asked whether Donald Trump could make up ground after most national polls show the GOP candidate lagging behind Clinton, Eric Trump cited Los Angeles Times, IBD/TIP and Rasmussen polls showing Trump with a slight edge.

"What he's already accomplished is nothing short of remarkable," Trump said of his father. "To me, as a son, he wins no matter what. I'm so incredibly proud. He's carried the weight of this country for the last 18 months."

In closing, Stephanopoulos asked Trump about his father's refusal to state at the third presidential debate that he would accept the results of the election.

"He didn't say he wouldn't accept," Eric Trump said. "My father will accept it 100 percent if it's fair. If it's fair."

He rattled off statistics that reportedly show "two million people on the voter rolls right now who are dead" and "14 per cent of all noncitizens in this country are registered to vote."

The Trump campaign has often used these numbers, or some estimation of them, to claim that there is "widespread voter fraud." Numerous outlets, including the Washington Post's Fact Checker, have debunked such claims.


As the Post's Michelle Ye Hee Lee wrote last week:

"Trump uses 'voter fraud' has become a catchall phrase for all voting irregularities. Confirmed instances of actual voter fraud do exist, but Trump makes a totally unsupported extrapolation of these isolated cases to say they are indicative of a widespread fraud in the US election system. We wonder whether it ever occurred to Trump that 'nobody is talking about' the 'big, big problem' of voter fraud because that 'big, big' problem doesn't exist. Trump earns Four Pinocchios.

"... As the researcher of the study notes, Trump's citing of these findings to back up his claim that illegal immigrants are voting and swaying elections is unfounded. Yet again, Trump takes isolated instances to extrapolate to a much larger trend, and earns Four Pinocchios."

Stephanopoulos told Eric Trump that there was "scant evidence" that those figures he cited had affected any election outcomes.

"Are you setting the groundwork there ... ?" he asked. "That seems like you're suggesting that the outcome is unfair no matter what happens."

"I think what my father is saying is, I want a fair election," Eric Trump said. "If it's a fair outcome, he'll absolutely accept it. There's no question."

- Washington Post

Get the news delivered straight to your inbox

Receive the day’s news, sport and entertainment in our daily email newsletter

SIGN UP NOW

© Copyright 2017, NZME. Publishing Limited

Assembled by: (static) on production apcf03 at 26 Mar 2017 23:58:09 Processing Time: 586ms