US President, Donald Trump has been hit with yet another accusation of sexual assault just weeks out from the federal election.
In an exclusive interview with The Guardian, Amy Dorris, a former model claims she was accosted by Trump outside the bathroom in his VIP box at the US Open tennis tournament in New York on September 5 1997.
Dorris’s account– like the scores of women who have accused the President of similar conduct before her– is graphic and horrifying. It depicts a man, so utterly absorbed in power, misogyny and privilege that he considers himself above the law, and certainly above any woman’s basic rights.
“He just shoved his tongue down my throat and I was pushing him off. And then that’s when his grip became tighter and his hands were very gropey and all over my butt, my breasts, my back, everything,” Dorris alleges.
“I was in his grip, and I couldn’t get out of it,” she said, adding: “I don’t know what you call that when you’re sticking your tongue just down someone’s throat. But I pushed it out with my teeth. I was pushing it. And I think I might have hurt his tongue.”
Just 24 at the time, Dorris supplied evidence to support her claims, including photographs of she and Trump the week in question, and tickets to the tournament. Her account was likewise corroborated by several individuals she confided in about the incident including her mother, friends and therapist.
Now 48, and a mother to twin daughters, Dorris says she refuses to “stay quiet” and allow Trump to keep evading accountability.
“I feel like my girls are about to turn 13 years old and I want them to know that you don’t let anybody do anything to you that you don’t want,” she said. “And I’d rather be a role model. I want them to see that I didn’t stay quiet, that I stood up to somebody who did something that was unacceptable.”
“I’m sick of [Trump] getting away with this. I’m tired of being quiet. It’s kind of cathartic. I just want to get this out. And I want people to know that this is the man, this is our president. This is the kind of thing he does and it’s unacceptable.”
Through lawyers, Trump unsurprisingly “denied in the strongest possible terms having ever harassed, abused or behaved improperly toward Dorris”. In a sentiment of victim-blaming routine from the President’s spokespeople, they said:
“it seemed incredible that Dorris would voluntarily choose to be in the vicinity of Trump…in the days following the alleged assault” and that “the timing of the claims so close to the November presidential election suggested they might be politically motivated.”
Dorris said that she “did not fully process what had happened until later,” adding that “people spend years around people who have abused them, that’s what happens when something traumatic happens, you freeze.”
The indignity of Dorris’s account is sadly not shocking. So far Trump has been accused of more than 25 acts of sexual misconduct, with the list of women growing steadily.
It became a flashpoint in the 2016 election when tapes surfaced revealing him gloating about grabbing women “by the pussy.” To this point, he has managed to avoid investigation despite mounting pressure for him to face the consequences of his actions.