On a Tuesday call with the new Irish prime minister, Leo Varadkar, President Donald Trump took it upon himself to single out a female reporter not for her work, but for her “nice smile.”
“She has a nice smile on her face. So I bet she treats you well,” Trump said to Varadkar of Caitriona Perry, who has been the Washington correspondent for Irish state broadcaster Raidio Teilifis Eireann (RTE) since 2014 according to The Hill.
Another video shows Trump referring to Perry as “this beautiful Irish press.”
“And where are you from? Go ahead, come here, come here. Where are you from?” he says.
Trump has already taken some flack for his single-minded focus on the female reporter’s appearance on social media, and while his words are indicative of an overarching pattern when it comes to Trump’s treatment of and comments about women, it’s nothing to what he’s said of and to other female reporters.
In 2015, Trump suggested then-Fox News’ Megyn Kelly was menstruating, simply because she brought him to question about his offensive words about women like Rosie O’Donnell, among other difficult questions. He’s also referred to Katy Tur as “Little Katy” (hm, maybe he was thinking of Florida Sen. Marco Rubio?) numerous times at his campaign rallies.
Trump’s comments on women in his life seem to focus largely on their appearances. In an interview in which Trump boasted that he would “go through the roof” if he’d come home and his wife wasn’t ready with dinner, Trump also compared his first two wives to beautiful buildings as he stated that he’d “created.”
Let’s also not forget this is the same man who, on the campaign trail, suggested Hillary Clinton didn’t have “a presidential look” (read: isn’t a man). He’s made similar comments about former Republican presidential candidate Carly Fiorina‘s face, and responded to allegations that he’d sexually assaulted a People reporter by telling his supporters to “look at her!” at one of his rallies — as if her appearance and perceived lack of male desirability should vindicate him of accusations of assault.
Trump is known for previously suggesting that women should be punished for having abortions, and harassing and intimidating women in the workplace, but his comments about women — especially women working in media — are indicative of another problem he has with sexism.
This is an opinion piece. The views expressed in this article are those of just the author.