Woman alleges Donald Trump kissed her during campaign

Saul Bowman
February 26, 2019

A woman who worked on Donald Trump's presidential campaign has sued the president - accusing him of kissing her without consent before a 2016 rally in Tampa, Florida. She also called the interaction "super-creepy" and "inappropriate".

She told the Post that she felt "violated" by the unwanted grab and kiss and has since seen a therapist to help mitigate the emotional fallout.

Farrow says the "most legally significant aspect" of the lawsuit may be that Johnson is now the sixth campaign or White House employee to defy a nondisclosure agreement.

Though the Post confirmed that she contemporaneously told her parents and boyfriend about the alleged kiss that same day, two of the women she said were witnesses - former Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi and Karen Giorno, a state-level director on the campaign, both supporters of the president - told the Post they did not see a kiss.

Further, Johnson also claims the campaign discriminated against her by compensating her with wages lower than her white co-workers. Two months later, Johnson consulted a Florida attorney about the unwanted kiss; he gave The Post text messages showing that he considered her "credible" but did not take her case for business reasons. "He told her he knew she had been on the road for a long time and that she had been doing a great job", the lawsuit alleges. In detailing the interaction to the Post, Johnson claimed she thought: "Oh, my God, I think he's going to kiss me".

"Defendant Trump grasped her hand and did not let go".

The 2005 recording saw then-reality star Trump tell host Billy Bush about strategies when approaching women, including advice to 'grab 'em by the pussy'.

The lawsuit is just the latest in a series of sexual assault allegations against Trump but the first to assert that the president was guilty of sexual misconduct whilst actively on the campaign trail.

"The campaign knew that it was underpaying Ms. Johnson relative to her white counterparts", the lawsuit claims. A campaign spokeswoman, Kayleigh McEnany, dismissed that claim as "off-base and unfounded", according to The Post.

"I think the thing that moved her most was seeing the forced separations - she's a mother and feels very deeply about - was very emotionally affected, personally affected, by seeing Trump put young children and put them in cages".

As the lawsuit notes, Johnson claimed the kiss happened in front of other high ranking officials in Florida. It wasn't immediately clear why she waited until now to file suit.

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