Democratic Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand reiterated her belief that President Donald Trump’s tweet on Tuesday about her was a “sexist smear” in an interview Wednesday.
“It was certainly just a sexist smear intended to silence me,” she said during an interview with NBC’s “Today Show” the day after the Twitter exchange. “And I’m not going to be silenced on this issue. I have heard the testimony of many women, numerous accusers. I believe them and he should resign for that.”
Gillibrand was referencing a tweet in which Trump used suggestive language to attack her. Gillibrand has called for Trump’s resignation after multiple women renewed their sexual misconduct allegations against him.
At least 15 women have come forward with a wide range of accusations against Trump, spanning from sexual harassment and sexual assault to lewd behavior around women. Of the women, 13 say Trump attacked them directly and two others say they witnessed behavior that made them uncomfortable. All the alleged incidents took place prior to his assuming the presidency. Trump has denied all the allegations.
In a message posted just after 8 a.m. ET Tuesday, Trump wrote that Gillibrand was a “lightweight” who would “do anything” for campaign contributions. Trump didn’t explain further what he meant.
“Lightweight Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, a total flunky for Chuck Schumer and someone who would come to my office “begging” for campaign contributions not so long ago (and would do anything for them), is now in the ring fighting against Trump. Very disloyal to Bill & Crooked-USED!,” Trump tweeted.
Speaking at a news conference later Tuesday, Gillibrand called Trump’s online insult derogatory.
“I see it as a sexist smear. I mean that’s what it is,” she said on Capitol Hill. “It’s part of the President’s efforts of name-calling and it’s not going to silence me, it’s not going to silence me. It’s intended to silence me. It’s not going to silence the women who have stood up against him directly, and it’s not going to silence the millions of women who been speaking out every day since his inauguration about things they disagree with.”
According to Federal Election Commission documents, Trump donated $4,800 to Gillibrand for Senate in 2010 and $2,100 to Gillibrand Victory Fund in 2007. A source close to Gillibrand said the senator did visit Trump in his office in 2010, and noted that his daughter, Ivanka Trump, was there the entire time.