The sudden rash of revelations about men who harass or abuse women is a positive step forward for equality and decency. It doesn’t matter which side of the political aisle the perpetrator is on. Anyone who uses their position or power to commit sexual assaults needs to be called out and suffer appropriate consequences.
At least that’s the view of Democrats in a new poll by Quinnipiac. When asked whether they would still consider voting for a candidate who has been accused of sexual harassment by multiple women, a plurality of Republican respondents (43%) said they would. In other words, they don’t think that it’s a disqualifying factor for a public servant to have committed sexual assaults.
The same survey broke out results for Democrats who have a completely different perspective. Eighty-one percent said that they would not consider voting for a candidate with such a dirty background. So this should put to rest the fallacy that there is no difference between the political parties. The difference, at least so far as this question is concerned, is that one side isn’t bothered by perverts, and the other side is. Which side are you on?
Donald Trump took sides this week when he told reporters that he still backs the pedophile candidate for senate in Alabama, Roy Moore. Like many of his fellow Republicans, Trump cited as a reason for supporting Moore his concern about passing a tax bill that gives corporations and the wealthy a huge break. So having a pervert in the senate is acceptable if he’s a right-wing pervert who will advance the interests of the one percent. Trump’s objection to Moore’s Democratic opponent, Doug Jones, is that he’s a liberal. Which in the view of the President is worse than being a child molester.
Hopefully most Americans don’t share that demented opinion. Particularly those in Alabama who will be voting in three weeks. But we already know that we can’t count on Fox News to exhibit any sense of decency. The network that has ingrained sexual abuse into their corporate culture is predictably behind Moore and praises Trump’s endorsement.
The problem for Trump is that he can’t make a principled condemnation of Moore without it leaking into his own history of sexually predatory behavior. There are at least sixteen women who have made credible accusations against him. Yet even after all of the sleazeballs who have been taken down in recent weeks, Trump is still skating away untouched. If anyone should be driven from office it’s Trump. And if his collusion with Russia, financial corruption, undermining the free press, or being a pathological liar and malignant narcissist aren’t sufficient reasons, then his sexual depravity and criminality should be.
This is a Creative Commons article. The original version of this article appeared here.