A report from the Washington Post reveals that the Trump campaign last night planned to have the four women who have accused Bill Clinton of sexually abusing them confront the former President on national TV right at the beginning of the debate.
The report notes that Trump wanted to seat Paula Jones, Juanita Broaddrick, Kathleen Willey and Kathy Shelton in his family box, and planned for them to walk into the debate hall at the same time as Bill Clinton to confront him.
The plan was nixed, however, when the Commission on Presidential Debates said it would have security officers remove the women, should the incident be attempted.
“The women were outraged,” said Trump surrogate Rudy Giuliani, who was in on the plan.
“They were in the holding room and ready to go. No one was pushing them. They volunteered.” Giuliani said adding, “But I knew the minute we got pushback that we had gotten into their heads. [Hillary] was rattled. They were rattled.”
“We were going to put the four women in the VIP box,” Giuliani explained. “We had it all set. We wanted to have them shake hands with Bill, to see if Bill would shake hands with them.”
The former New York mayor claimed that the debate commission’s co-chairman, Frank Fahrenkopf was the one who shut the plan down.
“Fahrenkopf said, ‘no’ – verbally said ‘no,’ that ‘security would throw them out,’” Giuliani said.
“We pulled it because we were going to have a big incident on national TV,” Giuliani said. “Frank Fahrenkopf stopped us and we weren’t going to have a fight on national TV with the commission to start the debate.”
Giuliani referred to the first debate and said it was a double standard on behalf of the commission, given that billionaire Hillary backer Mark Cuban was allowed to be seated front row.
“In the first debate with Mark Cuban, Fahrenkopf said we’ll make a deal and everybody will [be able] to approve who’s in the shot and if it’s not family, they have a right to object and we have a right to object,” Giuliani said. “So we object. But 10 minutes before that debate he tells us he can’t do anything about Cuban sitting in the first row, that security can’t throw him out.”
During the debate, Trump waded into Bill Clinton’s sordid past behavior with women, as a way of deflecting criticism being leveled at him following the release of “locker room” tapes of Trump talking suggestively about women.
“If you look at Bill Clinton, far worse, mine are words, and his was action,” Trump said. “His was what he’s done to women. There’s never been anybody in the history of politics in this nation that’s been so abusive to women.”
Trump then pointed to the four women, seated not in his box, but in the general audience.
“Hillary Clinton attacked those same women and attacked them viciously. Four of them are here tonight,” he said.
Trump specifically pointed out Kathy Shelton, a rape victim, whose attacker was defended by Hillary. Trump noted that Hillary was caught on tape laughing about knowing that Shelton’s attacker was guilty while she helped the guy get off with a light sentence.
“What President Clinton did, he was impeached, he lost his license to practice law, he had to pay a $850,000 fine to one of the women, Paula Jones, who’s also here tonight, and I will tell you that when Hillary brings up a point like that and she talks about words that I said 11 years ago, I think it’s disgraceful and I think she should be ashamed of herself if you want to know the truth,” Trump said.
The Trump campaign defended delving into the Clintons’ past, with Trump’s campaign manager Kellyanne Conway saying it was a legitimate way to highlight Hillary Clinton’s mistreatment of women.
— TODAY (@TODAYshow) October 10, 2016
“This does not have to do with Bill Clinton. It has to do with the way Hillary Clinton shamed and blamed the women in Bill Clinton’s life,” Conway said.