Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin (R) accused Donald Trump’s critics of “hypocrisy” for condemning Trump’s crude boasts about sexual assault when they themselves consume erotic fiction like Fifty Shades of Grey.
Trump’s comments, revealed in a 2005 video, bothered him, Bevin told radio host Terry Meiners on Tuesday, but the governor implied they shouldn’t affect anybody’s decision to vote for the Republican standard-bearer.
“It was foul. It was vulgar, and it shouldn’t have any place in the public discourse,” Bevin said. “But, that said, sadly, it does.”
Still, the Kentucky Republican directed most of his anger at those who would make a political issue out of Trump’s comments, since they almost certainly enjoy risqué forms of entertainment, he claimed.
“The very same hypocrites that are supposedly outraged and offended by this are the very same people that, I guarantee you, were first in line to go watch ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ to see if it was as trashy as the book they’ve read,” Bevin said. “And they probably listened to rap music on their way home to go play Grand Theft Auto with their kids and be encouraged to take other equally vulgar actions and language. It’s the hypocrisy of it that I’m offended by.”
Plenty of Trump supporters argue that anyone who consumes sex and violence in pop culture has no standing to criticize Trump’s offensive words. To suggest Trump’s critics are hypocrites, these apologists frequently cite the popularity of the novel Fifty Shades of Grey and the film it inspired, both of which feature consensual bondage-style sex.
In response, Fifty Shades of Grey author E.L. James and others have noted that Trump’s remarks were not merely bawdy, but condoned kissing and groping women without their consent.
Regardless of Bevin’s protestations, Trump’s proud claim that he could “grab [women] by the pussy” because of his celebrity devastated his electoral hopes when it surfaced last month. The revelation prompted Republican lawmakers to abandon the GOP nominee in droves and significantly hurt his standing in the polls.
Editor’s note: Donald Trump regularly incites political violence and is a serial liar, rampant xenophobe, racist, misogynist and birther who has repeatedly pledged to ban all Muslims — 1.6 billion members of an entire religion — from entering the U.S.