Presidential dalliances are nothing new, but Trump's crudeness may be a new low

September 17, 2018




President Trump is not the first president alleged to have had sexual and extra-marital romps. That is nothing new under the sun. Michael R. Beschloss, a Presidential historian and political analyst has been quoted by the Washington Post as saying, ''There isn't anything new about sex allegations and the Presidency.''


Presidents for which there is evidence and sometimes even proof of sexual dalliances and/or extramarital affairs include, of course, Bill Clinton, but the list is far longer. Modern presidents in the club include Kennedy, Eisenhower, Lyndon Johnson and Franklin Roosevelt. And there have been accusations about the first President Bush.


Even the staid Woodrow Wilson is not exempt, nor is the father of the country, George Washington. Not even is, arguably the greatest president of them all, and the one who saved the union, Abraham Lincoln. And of course, we know that Thomas Jefferson, author of the Declaration of Independence, fathered children with his slave Sally Hemings.


But in Trump, it may be the crudeness that sets him apart, as evidence of his words,  preserved on tape, showing him bragging about how women, because of his celebrity, allow him to do anything, including " Grab ’em by the pussy. You can do anything."


This may put Trump in a class by himself. Such words  are definitely not gentlemanly nor presidential. And they are very far from accounts of the relationship between Woodrow Wilson and Mary Peck, a divorced woman Wilson had met in Bermuda. That relationship may have been illicit, but appeared to be based on genuine affection and mutual attraction. Upon Wilson's wife Ellen's death, Wilson said his wife “knew and understood” his relationship with Mary Peck and “has forgiven.”


And Trump's behavior with women is far from the close relationship rumored to have been between Eisenhower and his WWII war time driver Kay Summersby, as far apart as is a pet puppy is from an adult wild wolf.


But, where is Harry Truman when we need him? He was singularly devoted to his Bess.




THE PRESIDENT UNDER FIRE: THE HISTORY; 14 Presidents Have Been The Talk of the Pillow


Transcript of Donald Trump grab them by the pussy remark


On Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemings


On Truman's devotion and fidelity to Bess


On Woodrow Wilson and Mary Peck


On Dwight Eisenhower and Kay Summersby




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