These women aren’t props for your partisan gotcha tweets.
The allegations against Roy Moore are disgusting — and if you find yourself reluctant to say so because of your politics, then you’re pretty gross, too. The Leigh Corfman story, reported by the Washington Post, is about so much more than just some older guy having a relationship with some younger girl. That, of course, would be bad enough — many girls haven’t even had their f***ing periods at age 14 — but this is also about a man who abuses his power to prey on the powerless. It’s about a respected district attorney finding a girl in a vulnerable position (waiting with her mother outside of a child-support hearing) and relishing in the opportunity to take advantage of it.
.. As my colleague David French notes, there are a lot of reasons to believe these allegations:
- There are multiple accusers.
- These women didn’t come to the press seeking attention, they simply answered the questions when the press came to them.
- They have witnesses corroborating their stories.
- Finally, the woman with the most serious allegations, Leigh Corfman, voted for Donald Trump in 2016 — making the political-hit-job storyline laughable at best.
.. As my colleague David French notes, there are a lot of reasons to believe these allegations: There are multiple accusers. These women didn’t come to the press seeking attention, they simply answered the questions when the press came to them. They have witnesses corroborating their stories. Finally, the woman with the most serious allegations, Leigh Corfman, voted for Donald Trump in 2016 — making the political-hit-job storyline laughable at best.
It’s not that these people only care about victims if the abuser is a liberal, it’s that they don’t really care about victims at all. For them, the abused are nothing more than political pawns to further a partisan agenda.
.. Now, these comments actually are very important — just not for the reasons that the people making them think that they are. They’re important not as defenses, but because they’re perfect examples of an exact reason why these women may have been too afraid to come forward sooner: because they were afraid that they’d be ridiculed and doubted, and that no one would believe them.
I’d like someone to please give me some examples of women who have launched themselves to fame and fortune by falsely accusing men of sexual assault — because we all know that that’s not what happens. What does happen is their reputations are scrutinized harshly, and the allies of the powerful men they’ve accused comb through their pasts looking for evidence that they’re liars. People are afraid to employ them; men are afraid to speak to them; their lives are forever changed. Make no mistake: Speaking out publicly about your abuse is not a way to stardom; it’s a painful, harrowing experience and a sacrifice that so few are able to actually make given how brutal the consequences can be.
When Cohn joined the Trump administration, many corporate executives were relieved, seeing him as a steadying influence.
.. Now, unfortunately, both Cohn and Mnuchin are endangering their reputations in their attempts to sell a tax cut.
.. Within the administration, there are real differences among how top officials have behaved and how they are perceived. Several — Tom Price, Reince Priebus, Sean Spicer and Rex Tillerson — have badly sullied their standing with virtually everyone outside the administration. After long careers, they have turned themselves into punch lines.
.. The clearest exception is Jim Mattis, the defense secretary. Mattis has done so partly by avoiding scandal and minimizing conflicts with Trump. But he has also been careful to set his own ethical boundaries. Can you recall a single time when Mattis has said something outright untrue? I can’t. That’s how he has retained his dignity in the eyes of so many people.
.. In the early stages of promoting Trump’s tax cut, they have made a series of statements that are blatantly false — not merely shadings of truth or questionable claims but outright up-is-down falsehoods mocked by various fact-checkers. The statements make the two look more like Trump press secretaries than serious business executives whom members of Congress can trust.
.. They fall into two main categories. The first is who benefits from the tax plan. “Wealthy Americans are not getting a tax cut,” Cohn said on “Good Morning America.” He was echoing a promise that Mnuchin had made before the inauguration: “Any reductions we have in upper-income taxes will be offset by less deductions, so that there will be no absolute tax cut for the upper class.”
.. Want to guess how many families in New York State — population 20 million — are wealthy enough that they’re likely to pay any estate tax next year, according to an estimate based on I.R.S. data? Just 470. The number is so low in Montana, Vermont, West Virginia and four other states — likely fewer than 10 families in each — that the I.R.S. doesn’t provide details, to avoid privacy concerns.
.. The Harvard economist Greg Mankiw coined the phrase “charlatans and cranks” specifically to describe people who claim that tax cuts pay for themselves. And Mankiw is a conservative who’s worked for George W. Bush and Mitt Romney.
.. Neither one of them has yet turned 60 years old. These won’t be their last jobs.