Steve Knight & Donald Trump: A Timeline in Cowardice

Santa Clarita, Calif. – With the release this week of further allegations of sexual assault, it is clearer than ever that Donald Trump’s actions are just as deplorable and abhorrent as his words. Trump is the worst kind of bully; not only does he think he can get away with saying whatever he wants, but he also thinks he can get away with doing whatever he wants.

But Trump didn’t get this far on his own. Every Republican politician that didn’t stand up to Trump from day one must be held accountable for their part in Trump’s rise. That includes Rep. Steve Knight. Last weekend Rep. Knight attempted to distance himself from Trump by announcing he will not vote for anyone for President.

While politically calculating, the decision wasn’t all that surprising. Knight has never stood up to Trump by his own volition and he isn’t starting now. Knight enabled Trump and by not voting he continues to do so.

“For more than a year, Rep. Steve Knight refused to stand up to Donald Trump’s sexist, racist, and bigoted language. It’s people like Knight who enable bullies like Trump, because it’s easier to stay quiet on the sidelines,” said Orrin Evans, Caforio’s campaign manager. “Now more than ever, we need someone like Bryan Caforio who will stand up for what’s right, even when it’s hard, and make the tough choices for the families of California’s 25th Congressional District.”

Here’s a side-by-side timeline of all the opportunities Knight had to stand up against Donald Trump:

 

What Trump Has Said

Knight’s ‘critique’

June 16, 2015: “They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists.” (On undocumented immigrants from Mexico.)

Silence.

[Though he thinks immigrants ‘hurt our way of life’]

July 18, 2015: “He’s not a war hero. He’s a war hero because he was captured. I like people that weren’t captured.”

Silence.
Nov. 12, 2015: “I know more about ISIS than the generals do. Believe me.”

Silence.

Nov. 24, 2015: “Now this poor guy, you ought to see this guy.” (Mr. Trump jerked his arms around in front of his body and used a mocking tone to imitate a disabled New York Times reporter.)

 

Silence.

Dec. 7, 2015: “Donald J. Trump is calling for a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States.”

Silence.
Dec. 18, 2015: “When people call you brilliant, it’s always good, especially when the person heads up Russia.”

Silence.

Feb. 1, 2016: “So if you see somebody getting ready to throw a tomato, knock the crap out of them, would you?”

Silence.

[Though he has told a protester he would “drop [his] ass”]

Feb. 6, 2016: “I would bring back waterboarding, and I’d bring back a hell of a lot worse than waterboarding.”

Silence.
Feb. 28, 2016: “I don’t know anything about David Duke. O.K.? I don’t know anything about what you’re even talking about with white supremacy or white supremacists.” (Mr. Trump later blamed a bad earpiece for declining to disavow support from the former Ku Klux Klan leader in the CNN interview.)

Silence.

[Though he voted multiple times to keep the Confederate flag flying and doesn’t know why that makes people think his party is racist]

March 3, 2016: “Look at those hands, are they small hands? And, he referred to my hands — ‘If they’re small, something else must be small.’ I guarantee you there’s no problem. I guarantee.”

Silence.
March 23, 2016: “The images are worth a thousand words.” (A Twitter post with an unflattering image of Senator Ted Cruz’s wife, Heidi, next to a glamour shot of Mr. Trump’s wife, Melania.)

Silence

March 30, 2016: “There has to be some sort of punishment for women who have abortions.”

Silence

[Though he would like to outlaw abortions]

June 5, 2016: “I’ve been treated very unfairly by this judge. Now, this judge is of Mexican heritage. I’m building a wall, O.K.? I’m building a wall.” (On Judge Gonzalo P. Curiel, a federal judge overseeing a suit against the defunct Trump University.)

Silence

June 14, 2016: “President Obama claims to know our enemy, and yet he continues to prioritize our enemy over our allies and, for that matter, the American people. When I am president, it will always be America first.”

 

Silence

July 20, 2016: “If we cannot be properly reimbursed for the tremendous cost of our military protecting other countries . . . then yes, I would be absolutely prepared to tell those countries, ‘Congratulations, you will be defending yourself.’”

Silence.

July 27, 2016: “Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing.” (An apparent reference to Hillary Clinton’s deleted emails.)

 

Silence

July 30, 2016: “If you look at his wife, she was standing there. She had nothing to say. She probably — maybe she wasn’t allowed to have anything to say. You tell me.” (On the parents of a Muslim soldier killed in Iraq after they denounced Mr. Trump at the Democratic National Convention.)

 

Silence….until Caforio called on him to disavow Trump – which he didn’t do.

Aug. 10, 2016: “[Obama is] the founder of ISIS. He’s the founder of ISIS. He’s the founder. He founded ISIS. I would say the co-founder would be crooked Hillary Clinton.”

Silence.

Aug. 10, 2016: “If she gets to pick her judges, nothing you can do, folks. Although the Second Amendment people — maybe there is, I don’t know.”

Silence.

Sept. 30, 2016: “She gained a massive amount of weight and it was a real problem. We had a real problem.”

Silence

Oct. 7, 2016: “I moved on her like a bitch. But I couldn’t get there. And she was married. Then all of a sudden I see her, she’s now got the big phony tits and everything.” (Part of a 2005 recording that surfaced showing Mr. Trump speaking in extremely vulgar terms about pushing himself on women.)

“I cannot support either candidate for President.”

 

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