Former Campaign Staffer Says Trump Kissed Her Without Consent

“I can still see his lips coming straight for my face.”

Shealah Craighead/ZUMA

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A staff member who worked on Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign has accused him of kissing her without her consent just months before Election Day. 

In a detailed account published in the Washington Post, Alva Johnson, who worked for the Trump campaign as an outreach staffer in Alabama and Florida, alleges Trump forcibly kissed her shortly before an August 2016 Tampa rally. Johnson described the incident as “super creepy and inappropriate.”

“I immediately felt violated because I wasn’t expecting it or wanting it,” Johnson recalled to the Post. “I can still see his lips coming straight for my face.”

The allegations add to a list of at least 20 women who have publicly accused Trump of sexual assault or inappropriate sexual behavior.

Johnson, who is African American, disclosed the incident in a federal lawsuit filed on Monday, which also includes claims that the campaign discriminated against her and paid her less than her white male colleagues. The White House denied Johnson’s account, calling it “absurd on its face.”

Trump, who spent Monday morning furiously tweeting about Spike Lee, Harry Reid, oil prices, and the border wall, has yet to publicly comment on the latest sexual misconduct accusations lodged against him.

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THE BIG PICTURE

You expect the big picture, and it's our job at Mother Jones to give it to you. And right now, so many of the troubles we face are the making not of a virus, but of the quest for profit, political or economic (and not just from the man in the White House who could have offered leadership and comfort but instead gave us bleach).

In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," we unpack what the coronavirus crisis has meant for journalism, including Mother Jones’, and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support our nonprofit journalism with a donation: We've scoured our budget and made the cuts we can without impairing our mission, and we hope to raise $400,000 from our community of online readers to help keep our big reporting projects going because this extraordinary pandemic-plus-election year is no time to pull back.

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