Female Panelist Shuts Down Corey Lewandowski’s Attempt To Discredit Trump Sexual Assault Accuser
Christine Quinn: "For You, Corey, 34 Years May Seem Too Long. But You Are Not The Person Who Alleges To Have Been Sexually Assaulted"
Video ››› ››› MEDIA MATTERS STAFF
From the October 13 edition of CNN's Anderson Cooper 360:
Loading the player reg...
ANDERSON COOPER (HOST): Corey, do you think the number of women who have come forward, do you think it hurts Donald Trump?
COREY LEWANDOWSKI: Look, I don't think it helps obviously, let's just be very clear about it. But I think again when you are accused of something you have the ability to respond, that's how our system works. And I agree that this should be litigated in the court of law, if that's where the case is. But what I find very fascinating is 25 days from an election, and this is supposedly in response to a question that was asked on a Sunday night, you know, 72 hours passed since that question was asked, and then Wednesday night someone comes out and follows up and says, "Anderson your question was so compelling, I waited another 72 hours so I could maximize my exposure to the media on this."
COOPER: Well she says she wrote immediately the following morning, she was up all night and then she decided to do it Monday morning, wrote to The New York Times.
LEWANDOWSKI: I find it -- look, I don't know how The New York Times works, but I think if they have a groundbreaking story which they claim this to be, they don't sit on it for an additional 72 hours to post a story. I find that very hard to believe. I think the closer to the election this gets, the more political it is, the more people want to come out who have their own interest, and they're very clear. Look, you can support Hillary Clinton, you are welcome to do that, but defaming somebody 25 days before an election, I think, is a little out of line when you've have had the opportunity, if this concerns you so for much time, to raise this issue for months and months or years -- this happened 37 years ago according to her own account.
CHRISTINE QUINN: I agree very much with the first part of what Kelly said, that everybody who makes a charge has a right to be heard, and those who are accused have a right in our system to be heard and be defended. But I just -- it's not gossip. This isn't gossipy. This woman came forward and told her story. And it's really hard for people who are victims and survivors of sexual violence to come forward. I've seen that in my work as a crime victim's advocate. I see it with the women and children I work with in the homeless system. It's hard.
And for you, Corey, 34 years may seem too long. But you are not the person who alleges to have been sexually assaulted on an airplane. And I think when Ms. Leeds talks about what it was like 35 years ago -- and it is not easy now -- we need to be mindful of that. And when she said no one complained; if she told her boss it would be written off as just, "get tougher, it's the rules of the road." Those are not made-up statements about what the culture was like then.
And even -- and I know you did not mean to do this, Corey. But when you question whether she really went to The New York Times on Monday or Wednesday, you inadvertently were calling her a liar. And what one of the things survivors fear is that they won't be heard and affirmed. That they'll be called horrible things. She was when she saw Mr. Trump the next time.
LEWANDOWSKI: They should come out. If something happened to them that was wrong and illegal, they should come out and bring that to light, there's no question. And maybe the statue of the limitations expired but that person is due their opportunity to talk about it.
QUINN: When they're ready. When they're ready.
LEWANDOWSKI: But what I find very unique and very surprising is we're 25 days from a presidential election. He has been the most high profile person, potentially on the planet, for the last year and a half running for president, and we have waited until three weeks before an election to raise an issue, which is a very serious issue. There is no question about it. But why wasn't this issue raised from this woman a year ago, or two years ago, or 20 years ago, or 30 years ago, or 35 years ago --
QUINN: Because you know why? Because Corey, we didn't wait for anything. We didn't wait for anything. It's not our story. She waited, and she hoped you could hear it in her voice, that she would be able to put this in the background of her life and never look at it again. And then she heard the tape on Friday. She heard Anderson's question. She heard Mr. Trump's response, and that caused something in her.