What the 2016 election proves about the sexual assault allegations against Trump (and what it doesn’t)

(CNN) On Thursday afternoon, White Property press secretary Sarah Sanders was first asked about Al Franken’s information of President Donald Trump as “a guy who has bragged on tape about his record of sexual assault.”

Here’s how she responded:

“The President resolved the comments back through the plan. We feel strongly that the people of the country also addressed that when they elected Donald Trump president. I don’t have anything to include.”

OK.

There are things that are most suitable in that statement by Sanders. And stuff that are totally and completely wrong.

Sanders is right that Trump addressed the allegations during the campaign.

“As you have seen, I am a victim of 1 of the great political smear campaigns found in the history of our region,” Trump said at a NEW YORK rally in mid-October 2016. “They are arriving after me to destroy what’s considered by even them the greatest movement in the history of our country.”

He repeated very similar denials through the entire final days of the plan. And Sanders herself, from the Light House podium, has stated that Trump’s official posture is that the ladies who accused him of sexually inappropriate carry out are simply lying.

You can disagree with Trump’s argument. Or believe he isn’t informing the truth. But you can’t deny that he possesses resolved the allegations — albeit in his personal unique way.

It’s the next component of Sanders’ assertion where she enters much dicier territory on the reality.

“We come to feel strongly that the people of the country also addressed that when they elected Donald Trump president,” Sanders said.

Obviously, you can’t fact-check a feeling. But Sanders’ argument here is worth checking. And that argument should go such as this: The “Access Hollywood” tape and the allegations made by greater than a dozen women that Trump acquired harassed them were all around the run-up to the election, and Trump even now won. Which ensures that people didn’t health care. And that the explanations that Trump has recently offered about these allegations are, subsequently, totally sufficient.

Sort of. But not really.

Here’s what we realize from the 2016 exit poll about how exactly people factored the “Access Hollywood” tape and the allegations against Trump to their votes. Asked “does Donald Trump’s treatment of women frustrate you?” 70% of the 2016 electorate stated “yes” while 29% stated “no.” Among the “yes” group, Hillary Clinton earned 65% to 29%. Among the “no” group, Trump won 87% to 10%.

What’s interesting is that while Trump misplaced among those who were incredibly bothered by his treatment of females, he in fact won among people who were bothered — however, not as much.

Individuals who said Trump’s behavior bothered them “a lot” (50% of the electorate) went for Clinton by 72 percentage points. In comparison, those who stated Trump’s treatment of females bothered them “some” (20%) went for Trump by 52 points. Ditto those who said Trump’s carry out bothered them “not much” who went for Trump by 80 points.

(Well worth noting here: Clinton won the popular vote by nearly 3 million votes more than Trump.)

What those numbers recommend is that for a chunk of voters, Trump’s behavior toward women was determinative within their vote. And they, by and large, voted for Clinton. But also for another major chunk of voters who didn’t like Trump’s execute, it was not enough of a disincentive to allow them to not really vote for him. Other things mattered more — namely that Trump successfully cast himself as a transformation agent in an election in which people badly wanted change.

Sanders then is not totally right found in her contention that the election made clear that voters didn’t care about the issue of Trump’s carry out around women. Lots and lots cared deeply — and they voted against Trump in droves. And/but: Lots cared, however, not enough to vote against Trump.

One other thing is vital that you say here: There is nothing — not. one. thing. — in the exit poll info or the vote itself that shows that voters accepted Trump’s edition of events regarding the allegations built against him by these females. They may not have voted on that issue, but to claim the 2016 election was an exoneration of Trump in the face of most of these accusations is to take about five logic leaps too many.

Trump won. Despite having these outstanding allegations against him. Both of these things are authentic. But to try and use the first truth to dismiss the second one is a massive error.

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