President Donald Trump said that it’s a “scary time” for young men in America since they can face sexual assault allegations even when they may be innocent.
Speaking to reporters on the South Lawn of the White House before boarding a flight Tuesday, Trump said that the political climate in America today makes it hard to refute allegations, referencing claims of sexual misconduct by Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.
“It is a very scary time for young men in America when you can be guilty of something that you may not be guilty of,” he told reporters. “This is a very difficult time. What’s happening here has much more to do than even the appointment of a Supreme Court justice. You can be somebody that was perfect your entire life and somebody can accuse you of something. It doesn’t necessarily have to be a woman. But somebody can accuse you of something.”
Trump said that the current situation meant that some men are “guilty until proven innocent.”
Asked if he had a message for young women, Trump said it’s a “great time for women.”
California psychology professor Christine Blasey Ford testified to Congress last week that as a teenager Kavanaugh held her down, put his hand over her mouth and tried to remove her clothes. A second woman, Deborah Ramirez, said that as a college student he exposed himself to her during a party. A third woman, Julie Swetnick, alleges that she was gang raped at a party that Kavanaugh attended.
Kavanaugh denies all of the allegations.
During the 2016 campaign, Trump faced allegations of sexual misconduct from 18 women ranging from walking through women’s dressing rooms to unwanted kissing to touching their genitals without their consent. Trump denied all the allegations, calling the women “horrible, horrible liars.” He’s currently facing a defamation lawsuit from one of the women, former Apprentice contestant Summer Zervos.
The president’s eldest son, Donald Trump Jr., also said in an interview this week that he’s “scared most” for his sons, rather than his daughters.