During a Tuesday press opportunity in the Oval Office, President Trump told a reporter that she had a “nice” smile. As a result, liberals are calling Trump out for what they call a “classic case of sexual harassment” and are asking that the president be punished.
While on the phone with Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar, Trump told the PM that some Irish journalists were in audience and, while on the phone with the PM, called one of them over.
“We have all of this beautiful Irish press,” Trump told Varadkar. Referring a reporter in attendance by the name of Catriona Perry, Trump said, “She has a nice smile on her face so I bet she treats you well.”
Liberal women’s advocacy organization, UltraViolet, took issue with the president’s sentiments and claimed that the “incident” was simply sexual harassment.
In a letter to White House Counsel Evan McGahn, Ultraviolet called on the Counsel to investigate the incident.
“The women who work in the White House, whether on staff or as members of the press, should be able to do their jobs without the threat of harassment,” UltraViolet’s letter read. “We also hope you agree with us that no one, and especially not the President, is above the law.”
The letter read:
“We write to you today to urge you to investigate an incident that occurred yesterday in the Oval Office between President Donald Trump and a female reporter from RTE, Caitriona Perry, which appears to be a classic case of sexual harassment.
The incident, which has been widely shared online, happened as President Trump wasspeaking to Leo Varadkar, the Irish Taoiseach, on the phone. While speaking on the phone. President Trump said ‘we have all of this beautiful Irish press’ and then singled out a female reporter in the women and commented on her ‘nice smile.'”
The letter featured a link to a video documenting the exchange, and continued:
“As you may be aware, prior to being President, Mr. Trump has a long and well documented [sic] history of sexual harassment and numerous women have come forward to accuse him of sexual assault. We are particularly concerned about the incident yesterday in the Oval Office because it is eerily familiar to the behavior that President Trump–in the Access Hollywood tape that came out during the campaign–has himself stated is acceptable. In that tape, President Trump stated that ‘when you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything.'”
The letter concluded:
“Given this, we ask that you immediately and aggressively investigate this incident and hold those responsible accountable.”
White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus was also copied on the letter.
The journalist herself, Perry, shared a video of the incident on Twitter, calling the moment “bizarre.”
— Caitriona Perry (@CaitrionaPerry) June 27, 2017
Liberal Twitter users gleefully took to the social media platform in order to decry Trump’s latest “gaffe.”
See some of their reactions below.
It's hell to be objectified. When POTUS has no fear of doing that surrounded by cameras… I'm so sorry. Your success is more than a smile.
— Cristin Harber (@CristinHarber) June 28, 2017
Remarks like that in workplace R completely inappropriate. There's a time & place: discussing one's attractiveness in workplace is wrong.
— Tigress (@Tigrress_) June 28, 2017
"Gives spotlight"? He objectified her and was hugely inappropriate and disrespectful.
— Danielle Tcholakian (@danielleiat) June 28, 2017
Trump,"She has a nice smile on her face so I bet she treats you well."😳Ms.Perry, please accept the apology of at least 1 female American.😔
— Christine Canning (@Canni2Canning) June 27, 2017
He said, "She has a nice smile. I bet she treats you well." Level 10 creeper!
— JMC (@Juliana4984) June 27, 2017
We apologize that our president is a weird, inappropriate creep.
— Shannon Coulter (@shannoncoulter) June 27, 2017
1) it was utterly inappropriate in the work-place…they weren't on a date!
2) you could see she was uncomfortable, he relishes this power
— Caroline Feraday (@CarolineFeraday) June 28, 2017
— HeartMommy (@HeartMommy) June 27, 2017
Repulsive. This sexual predator is using his power to blatantly abuse a woman on-camera. Anyone who thinks this is ok needs to wake the F up
— Nokasofis (@nokasofis) June 28, 2017