The Lincoln Project, the anti-Trump GOP super PAC, released a new video Friday criticizing President Trump’s friendly remarks toward Ghislaine Maxwell, the longtime associate of Jeffrey Epstein who is awaiting trial on charges that she helped recruit girls who were sexually abused.
Both Epstein and Maxwell have been seen in photos with Trump, as well as with other prominent figures such as Bill and Hillary Clinton.
“I just wish her well, frankly,” Trump said Tuesday when asked about the case at a press conference.
Trump said that he met Maxwell “numerous times over the years, especially since I lived in Palm Beach, and I guess they lived in Palm Beach.”
“But I wish her well, whatever it is,” he added.
Prosecutors allege Maxwell helped persuade and transport minors to engage in sexual acts with Epstein and others in the mid-1990s, and at times participated in the abuse herself. Her trial is scheduled to begin in July 2021.
The minutelong Lincoln Project ad shows footage of Trump engaging with Maxwell and Epstein, who was found dead in his jail cell last year.
“On November 3, it’s time to return honor and dignity to the White House,” the ad concludes, showing images of presumptive Democratic nominee and former Vice President Joe Biden.
— The Lincoln Project (@ProjectLincoln) July 24, 2020
“It’s despicable to hear the president express sympathy for an accused child sex trafficker,” said Tara Setmayer, senior adviser to the Lincoln Project, said in a statement. “While the country continues to grieve unspeakable loss from the Trump Administration’s failed COVID-19 response, the President wishes an alleged pedophile pimp well from the White House podium. Shameful.”
The Lincoln Project is not the first PAC to seize on the president’s words. The Democratic super PAC MeidasTouch released a new 30-second ad this week titled “Trump is a Disaster,” highlighting some of the president’s most controversial comments, including those wishing Maxwell well.
Epstein. Maxwell. Trump. pic.twitter.com/UVr8bmCIoh
White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said Thursday that Trump’s well wishes were intended to convey that he wants to see justice play out in the case.
“What the president was noting is that the last person who was charged in [Epstein’s] case ended up dead in a jail cell, and the president wants justice to be served for the victims in this case, and he prefers this to play out in a courtroom,” McEnany said on Fox News.
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