Dozens of people spoke out in defense of Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) Tuesday after President Donald Trump implied she was willing to trade sex for campaign contributions.
In a Tuesday morning tweet, Trump responded to Gillibrand’s call for his resignation by labeling Gillibrand a “lightweight” and “total flunky” for Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.). He added that Gillibrand would come to Trump’s office “‘begging’ for campaign contributions not so long ago” and “would do anything for them.”
Gillibrand responded later in the day, calling Trump’s attack a “sexist smear” and tweeting, “You cannot silence me or the millions of women who have gotten off the sidelines to speak out about the unfitness and shame you have brought to the Oval Office.”
Actresses, journalists and fellow Democrats came to Gillibrand’s defense on Twitter.
Actress Amber Tamblyn tweeted her shock over Trump’s words, writing, “He’s inferring Senator Gillibrand would use her body to get campaign contributions if she had to. He’s talking. Wow. WOW. This is the president of The United States. Wow.”
MSNBC host Mika Brzezinski also weighed in: “I support @SenGillibrand. She is a great leader and a champion for women. The President crossed another line today.”
During Tuesday morning’s segment of “Morning Joe,” Brzezinski expanded on her comments, calling Trump’s tweet “derogatory” and “disgusting.”
“You treat women terribly, and you treat women around you even worse,” she said. “And you treat women like punching bags because it’s fun for you because you are intimidated by women.”
Many of Gillibrand’s fellow Democrats also voiced their alarm in response to Trump’s tweet.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Ma.) retweeted Trump on Tuesday morning, writing, “Are you really trying to bully, intimidate and slut-shame @SenGillibrand? Do you know who you’re picking a fight with? Good luck with that, @realDonaldTrump.”
Other Democratic lawmakers including former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.), Rep. Jackie Speier (D-Calif.), Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) and Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.) weighed in on the controversy.
“@SenGillibrand is a fierce advocate for women who deserves the utmost respect,” Speier tweeted. “The President hasn’t seen the full wrath of America’s women yet, but he’s about to.”
Twenty-one women have accused Trump of sexual misconduct. On Monday, four of his accusers held a press conference urging Congress to open an investigation into Trump’s alleged inappropriate behavior. Nearly 60 Democratic Congresswomen also signed and published a letter Monday night to the chair and ranking members of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform calling for an investigation into Trump.