The Jury Talks Back


The Women in Whom E. Jean Carroll Confided Go Public

Filed under: Uncategorized — Patterico @ 7:56 am

E. Jean Carroll is the woman saying Donald Trump had a sexual encounter with her 23 years ago, which many people describe as rape. (She doesn’t call it rape, as we will see.) Yesterday, the women in whom Carroll confided went public with their stories, kind of. It was done in a podcast called “The Daily” with a New York Times reporter. The podcast was released today, and I just finished listening to it.

Now that I have heard the story, it doesn’t sound like it was clear to Trump that Carroll was not consenting.

The interview is done very badly. I don’t know if the women made it a condition that they get together with one another and with E. Jean Carroll all at the same time, but that’s how the interview was done. If your goal was to find out what the women independently remember about what Carroll told them, forget it. You barely hear from them in the podcast. It’s certainly an unusual way to conduct an interview that is supposed to be corroboration of Carroll. It begins with Carroll recounting the whole incident, in the presence of the other two women. Minimal details are elicited from the two women about what Carroll actually said at the time. Most of the story comes from Carroll.

And even coming from Carroll, it doesn’t sound like it was necessarily clear to Trump that Carroll was not consenting. She herself refuses to call it rape. She describes a lot of flirtatious banter between her and Trump, which she thought was fantastic. The encounter began with Trump soliciting her advice about lingerie, and quickly turned to a teasing conversation about who was going to try on the lingerie: her, or Trump. (Trump said she should. She said Trump should.) They get to the dressing room and then he moves on her. She never says a word throughout the encounter — no “what are you doing?” or “no!” But she does describe it as a fight.

When she called the first woman, Lisa Birnbach, Carroll says she thought it was great material and was still laughing about it. Birnbach says that what Carroll was describing sounded like rape. According to Birnbach, she asked Carroll: “He raped you?” and Carroll made a noise like “ehhh.” Then the woman said that Carroll should go to the police, and Carroll flatly refused.

When Carroll called the second woman, Carol Martin, Martin told her to tell nobody. That’s about all you hear from Martin.

Almost nothing about what Carroll actually said to the women comes out of the women’s mouths in the podcast. It’s mostly Carroll describing the incident, and New York Times reporters flapping their meatholes.

But the overall impression one gets is that Donald Trump maybe just thought he had a quick sexual encounter with this woman. That she was interested in him because he was famous, and that she found the whole thing funny — before and after the encounter, certainly, if perhaps not during the encounter.

It’s not what I expected going in.

Terrible job by the New York Times. And I say that as someone who despises Donald Trump.

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