White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders is trying to spin Trump’s disdain for immigrants as concern for the safety of migrant women. That’s pretty fucking gross!
During Friday’s White House press briefing, Sanders was asked about comments the president made on Thursday while at an event to promote the Republican tax law. Instead of talking about the massive upward distribution of wealth facilitated by his tax policies, he talked about rape.
And remember my opening remarks at Trump Tower when I opened,” Trump said, referring to his 2015 presidential announcement speech, in which he argued that Mexico is “not sending their best. ...They’re rapists.”
“Everybody said, ‘Oh, he was so tough,’ and I used the word rape,” Trump said Thursday. “And yesterday, it came out where this journey coming up, women are raped at levels that nobody has ever seen before. They don’t want to mention that. So we have to change our laws.”
The Refugee Caravan—right now about 1,200 strong—is an annual excursion coordinated by the group Pueblo Sin Fronteras. Its purpose is to bring awareness to the dangerous journey migrants experience when they leave their home countries.
But this afternoon, when asked about the president’s initial remarks about the Refugee Caravan, Sanders tried to twist them into some kind of concern for migrant women. She said that Trump was referring to a Los Angeles Times article that stated that, for those making the journey to the border, “robberies, rapes and assaults—perpetrated by smugglers, cartel members an Mexican immigration agents —are common.”
“Up to 80 percent—in recent years—of women that are making that journey have been raped in the process,” said Sanders. “The president’s saying it’s simply unacceptable and this is something that should be looked at.”
The statistic comes from a 2014 Fusion investigation: Directors of migrant shelters told reporters that 80 percent of Central American women and girls are raped on their way to the U.S. border. In 2010, a report from Amnesty International had the number closer to 60 percent.
If the Trump Administration is truly so horrified by sexual assault experienced by women and girls, they can demilitarize the border and stop forcing migrants to take increasingly dangerous routes into the United States. If the president is so concerned about victims, he should stop victimizing them.