Trump’s Contempt for Women Seen in Hush Money Trial, Linked to His Misogynist Policies

Interview with Amanda Marcotte, a senior politics writer at Salon and author, conducted by Scott Harris

Donald Trump is the first former president and presidential candidate in U.S. history to be indicted on felony charges, now facing 88 criminal offenses in a total of four federal and state criminal cases.  While Trump’s multiple appeals have resulted in delays in his Washington Jan. 6th case, Georgia election interference case, and the Florida classified documents case, the hush money trial in a New York City courtroom is now in its fourth week.

Trump is charged with falsifying his company’s business records to cover up the reason of his reimbursements to his former lawyer Michael Cohen. Cohen paid $130,000 to adult film star Stormy Daniels in exchange for her silence about a sexual encounter she says she had with Trump in 2006, which Trump denies. Arrangements for the payment to Daniels were made to prevent damaging public disclosures about the sexual encounter in the closing days of the 2016 presidential election campaign.

Between The Lines’ Scott Harris spoke with Amanda Marcotte, senior politics writer at and author, who discusses the testimony in the New York hush money trial, which sheds light on Trump’s contempt for women, that she asserts is linked to his administration’s misogynist policies on abortion and related issues.

AMANDA MARCOTTE: I understand in the grand scheme of things, the attempted theft of the 2020 election and the theft of classified documents are objectively bigger issues. But I really resent the way this case is being downplayed in a lot of the media because I would say that what you see time and again in this case, in many different ways are all the kind of predictors of Trump’s just chronic criminality that led him to be the kind of person who would do things like steal classified documents, try to steal an election, and showed, you know, from the beginning that he was a dangerous criminal who was always gonna push it as far as he could, and the more power he was given, the more dangerous he became. And I think, you know, in two separate ways, which is one, the attempt to hide this information from the public in committing crimes reportedly to do so. But also I think we learned with Stormy Daniels’ testimony yet again, that another way that he is always pushing the boundaries of how far he can get away with things is in his relentless sexual predation towards women.

SCOTT HARRIS: Amanda, you look at the testimony of adult film actress Stormy Daniels and you conclude that as a nation we’ve made some progress in how we perceive the complex issues such as sexual violence and consent. Tell us about the silver lining here that you see and how the court and the public are treating these very sensitive and complex issues.

AMANDA MARCOTTE: Yeah, I think before #MeToo there was a real tendency to talk about these issues as like discreet black and white things. Like any one incident was sort of litigated as if it was like a crime being tried before a jury. So if a woman’s story wasn’t like this man did stuff to me that was legally like, could hold up in a court of law as sexual assault or a rape, there was a tendency to just be like, it’s either criminal sexual behavior or it’s basically treated as all the same.

And I think what happened with #MeToo was I think people learned a couple of things. First of all, they learned that like a handful of men do most of the violence against women, that it’s just guys that it’s like this is their thing and they just attack one woman after another.

So you, when you see that like one in three or one in four or some like high number of women have been sexually assaulted. That’s not saying that that number of men does it. It’s usually men who rack up victims by the dozens. Right? I think the other thing people learned is that these guys kind of push it as far as they can in any given circumstance. And we’ve definitely seen this with Trump where different women have different stories. Some of ’em are just straight up E. Jean Carroll. What she reported is rape, right? And was litigated in court as sexual assault.

Other women described sexual assault similar to what he bragged about on the tapes. But for other women it was more like harassment, leering grossness, forced kisses. Things I don’t think that you could throw someone in prison for. And obviously Stormy Daniels says like what she experienced she felt like was ultimately transactional enough in her mind.

I think that she felt like that it’s consensual in the legal sense, but no one doubts hearing her story that it was unwanted in that it was creepy and coercive. There’s evidence that female swing voters are beginning to see the connection between Trump’s personal misogyny towards women and his misogynist policies like overturning Roe v Wade, banning abortion. I don’t know that people necessarily understood the connection between those two things. And I think there’s probably like a lot of education that needs to happen. But at the end of the day, like I think there’s an opportunity to say if he doesn’t care about his wife and he doesn’t care about the women he sleeps with, if he doesn’t care about any women, then why does he care if women get sick and die or otherwise suffer from abortion bans? He just doesn’t care.

I think if you put it like that, I think it will help connect these issues for people because right now, I think that people don’t necessarily see the connection between the two, that are already hard-core feminist, like myself.

For more of Amanda Marcotte’s journalism, visit

Listen to Scott Harris’ in-depth interview with Amanda Marcotte (17:24). More articles and opinion pieces are found in the Related Links section of this page.

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