Why would a rape survivor support Donald Trump?

UNITED STATES – FEBRUARY 29: Rep. Nancy Mace, R-S.C., is seen outside the U.S. Capitol after the House of Representatives passed a continuing resolution to fund the government through March 8, Thursday, February 29, 2024. (Tom Williams/CQ -Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)
(Tom Williams/Getty Images)

Why would a rape survivor support Donald Trump?

Opinion piece, Elections 2024

Robin Abcarian

March 13, 2024

Before he got his head cut off by Republican U.S. Rep. Nancy Mace


On Sunday, ABC News “This Week” host George Stephanopoulos asked her a perfectly reasonable question.

As a rape survivor, why would you support someone who sexually assaults women?

Stephanopoulos had just played a 2019 clip of Mace, then a member of the South Carolina Legislature, speaking emotionally about her rape at age 16, how she was ashamed and how long it took her to come forward because she feared no one would believe it. here. She asked state lawmakers, in the most personal way possible, to include an exception for rape and incest in a draconian anti-abortion law, which they did.

To describe

Mace’s testimony as frank and courageous,


asked why, given that history, she would support former President Trump.

Judges and two separate juries have found him liable for rape and for defaming the rape victim, Stephanopoulos.

said early

. How do you square that endorsement of Donald Trump with the testimony we just saw?

That circle can only be squared on Planet MAGA, where nothing the former president has ever done is considered disqualifying. In the surreal exchange that followed, Mace repeatedly accused Stephanopoulos of trying to shame himself


as a rape victim, stating that this very question would make it more difficult for rape survivors to come forward.

I live with shame, and you’re asking me a question about my political choices to shame me as a rape victim, Mace said, and I think it’s disgusting.

It’s not about shaming you, Stephanopoulos replied. It’s a question about Donald Trump.

How I hate to write this, but I don’t think I’ve ever seen a woman invoke the rape card in this way. So unfair. So harmful.

And before you start shouting that Trump was technically not found guilty of rape

E. Jean

Carroll, it’s important to remember that even the judge in that case said that what Trump did to Carroll in a Bergdorf locker room all those years ago was indeed rape.

The finding that Ms. Carroll failed to prove that she was raped within the meaning of New York criminal law does not mean that she failed to prove that Mr. Trump raped her, as many people commonly believe the word rape, according to US District Court Judge Lewis. Kaplan wrote. As the trial evidence detailed below makes clear, the jury found that Mr. Trump in fact did just that.

Not content with accusing Stephanopoulos of shaming her, Mace also accused Carroll of downplaying sexual abuse by joking about how she might spend the $83 million awarded to her by juries in her two defamation cases.

And honestly, E. Jean Carroll’s comments when she got the verdict joking about what she was going to buy? Mace said. It makes it harder for women to come forward when they ridicule rape.

I’m just guessing, but I think the news that a victim’s attacker has to pay her millions of dollars in damages because she says she lied about it might inspire others to come forward. Maybe even en masse.

In any case, what Carroll said is hardly downplaying


rape: I would like to give the money to something that Donald Trump hates, Carroll said on Good Morning America in January. If it will hurt him if I give money to certain things, then that is my intention. Well, maybe a fund for the women sexually assaulted by Donald Trump.

To her credit, Carroll declined to engage with Mace on Sunday, instead posting on X that she wished Mace well.

And, Carroll added, I salute all survivors for their strength and endurance


and stick to their common sense.

That was a neat trick Mace tried to pull off by shaming Carroll while declaring herself the real shaming victim.

Mace isn’t the only high-profile Republican lawmaker to dishonestly invoke rape to support Trump.

Last week, Alabama Sen. Katie Britt’s much-maligned response to President Biden’s State of the Union address brought up rape in a completely bizarre way. Britt, whose theatrical presentation immediately became fodder for Saturday Night Live, suggested that Biden’s border policies were responsible for the sex trafficking of a Mexican woman who, coincidentally, was actually exploited in Mexico during the George W. Bush administration.

The cartels laid her on a mattress in a shoebox of a room, and they sent men through that door again and again for hours, Britt said, her voice shaking with emotion. We would not approve of this happening in a third world country. This is the United States of America, and in my opinion it is high time we start acting like it. President Biden’s border policy is a disgrace.

I doubt Britt believed what she said, just like I doubt Mace actually believed Stephanopoulos was trying to shame her. This is political theater at its worst


In Mace’s case, the attempt to turn the tables on Stephanopoulos was a convenient way to deflect her obvious hypocrisy, and the hypocrisy of all the family-values ​​types who embrace the re-election of the twice-impeached former president still on 91 felony charges. is confronted. counts for a wide range of crimes, and who has bragged

please, let’s not forget

that he can grab women by the genitals with impunity.

Like Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, then-House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham and countless other Republicans, Mace once condemned Trump, blamed him for the insurrection and declared that he was unfit for office.

Her change of heart came about, she told Stephanopoulos, because I listened to my constituents in South Carolina, and they have moved beyond Jan. 6.

But she has never explained why, as an outspoken advocate for rape survivors, she supports a man found guilty of that very crime.

I think that’s because she can’t. Her only defense, as she demonstrated last week, is a senseless violation.



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