Just when you thought it was safe to turn on your television, Donald Trump, New York businessman and reality television star (not to mention Republican presidential candidate), is back in the news with some more hyperbolic rhetoric to give most of America and women who like rights nightmares. Want to know how Donald Trump would punish women who choose to have abortions? Follow me down this newest rabbit hole.
During a taping of an MSNBC town hall in Wisconsin that will be aired later Wednesday, host Chris Matthews was doggedly pressing Trump to reveal his stance on abortion rights. He wanted to know if Trump felt that women should be punished if they choose to have an abortion if it is outlawed. Trump tried to evade the question, but Matthews wouldn't allow it, saying; "This is not something you can dodge."
According to a Bloomberg News report, Trump told Matthews, "There has to be some form of punishment."
"For the woman?" Matthews asked.
"Yeah." Trump said, nodding.
He did qualify that he felt the punishment would "have to be determined."
Not two hours later, Trump stood in front of a crowd of 1,000 supporters and announced, "Nobody respects women like Donald Trump. Nobody will be better for women." according to the Daily Mail.
After the appearance, Trump's campaign issued the following statement on his website saying that — should abortion be outlawed — laws should punish abortion-performing doctors and not the women receiving abortions:
Trump has had a long, befuddling, ever-changing relationship with his views on abortion. First he was pro-choice, back in his salad days when he was still a reality television star and a failed steak salesman. In a 1999 interview with Tim Russert for NBC's Meet The Press, Trump was proudly pro-choice.
It seems the times have changed for The Donald. Back in 1999 he was simply flirting with the idea of running for president. Now he is in it to win it. Now he not only wants to ban abortions, but punish women who choose to have abortions. Which would effectively erase decades of work by politicians, activists, and feminist groups. Yet, Trump is still claiming to respect women? I'm not buying it, and I'm certainly not the only one.
I have to tell you, there is one sort of beautiful moment that has come from Trump's reactionary stance on abortion today. Anti-abortion acitivists and pro-choice activists alike are both denouncing Trump's statements.
So, if we're going to try to look on the bright side here, two diametrically opposed factions are both telling The Donald, "no thank you," which is something to kinda-sorta celebrate, right?
All of this has me wondering though... will Trump's latest massive guffaw even register with his supporters? Or will the Trump steamroller simply keep on keeping on? Only the next few days will make that clear, but it's getting harder and harder for Trump to continue saying that he respects women.