When Donald Trump hit the campaign trail in 2015, he promised Americans that he would “drain the swamp” in Washington, D.C., and hire only the best people to help him lead the country in a new direction.
While there are several arguments to show that Trump has done no such thing since taking over the White House, one in particular is highly disturbing.
Since 2017, the public has learned of at least six men in Trump's political orbit, five of whom worked for him, who were accused of crimes against women — and that is to say nothing of the president himself.
Up first, former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski, was accused by Trump supporter Joy Villa — famous for wearing a MAGA dress to the 2018 Grammys — of sexual assault at a holiday party.
Villa tweeted about the incident, writing, “Here’s the photo of @CLewandowski_ seconds before he slapped my ass, I told him to stop, and then he did it again. I was shocked and embarrassed by his behavior.”
She said Lewandowski “smacked my ass really hard, almost violent in nature,” then laughed and walked away.
“Democrat or Republican, all of us should join to combat this,” she said at the time.
Lewandowski faced an earlier accusation of assault after he manhandled former Breitbart News reporter Michelle Fields at a news conference in 2016. He was subsequently let go as manager of Trump’s campaign.
Then there is Jason Miller, a former spokesperson for the Trump campaign. Miller is accused of slipping an “abortion pill” into the drink of a sex worker he had impregnated. Though he denies that charge, Miller has openly admitted to hiring sex workers since 2001 and having two affairs while his wife was pregnant.
And let’s not forget former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon, who faced domestic violence charges after allegedly grabbing his now-ex-wife’s neck 20 years ago. The woman claimed Bannon destroyed their telephone when she attempted to call police.
According to the police report: “Early in the morning she got up to feed their twins, and Mr Bannon got upset at her for making some noise.” She asked for the credit card in order to buy groceries, Bannon told her to write a check, and when she “asked him why he was playing those games with the money” he said it was his money.
The woman spat on Bannon, and then “he reached up to her, from the driver’s seat of his car, and grabbed her left wrist. He pulled her down … Mr Bannon grabbed at her neck also pulling her into the car. She said that she started to fight back.”
The charges were later dropped.
Rob Porter, a former top White House aide, resigned last year after accusations of domestic abuse by two of his ex-wives surfaced.
“Colbie Holderness, Porter's first wife, and Jennifer Willoughby, Porter's second wife, both said their ex-husband's consistent abuse was the reason for their respective divorces,”CNN reported at the time.
Porter said the allegations were false and “outrageous,” but that we would step down and not “further engage publicly with a coordinated smear campaign."
Then-White House chief of staff John Kelly described Porter as "a man of true integrity and honor and I can't say enough good things about him."
Just days after Porter resigned, another White House official left the administration amid abuse allegations. David Sorensen, who worked with the Council on Environmental Quality’s speechwriting team, was also accused by an ex-wife.
Jessica Corbett claimed Sorensen “ran a car over her foot, put out a cigarette on her hand, threw her into a wall and grasped her menacingly by her hair while they were alone on their boat in remote waters off Maine's coast, an incident she said left her fearing for her life."
Though he denied the allegations, Sorensen resigned after administration officials approached him on the matter.
"I resigned to help the White House avoid an unnecessary distraction,” he said at the time.
And lastly, though he did not work for the Trump administration or campaign specifically, former deputy Republican National Committee Finance Chairman and avid Trump supporter Elliott Broidy faced accusations in 2018 by a former mistress that he physically abused her.
In court documents, former Playboy model Shera Bechard said:
"Mr. Broidy admired Mr. Trump's uncanny ability to sexually abuse women and get away with it. Mr. Broidy began to hurt Ms. Bechard physically during their sexual activities -- touching her in ways to which she did not consent."
Trump’s then-personal attorney Michael Cohen represented Broidy in the matter and crafted the confidentiality agreement between the individuals.