Donald Trump’s “naked sexism,” including toward his own daughter, is described in a new book by Miles Taylor, the former Trump administration official who famously wrote a scathing op-ed about the former president under the pen name “Anonymous.”
Taylor, a former chief of staff at the Department of Homeland Security, describes several incidents that made women in the Trump administration uncomfortable in his upcoming book Blowback: A Warning to Save Democracy from the Next Trump, an extract of which was obtained exclusively by Newsweek.
These incidents included, the book says, claims by aides that Trump made lewd comments about his daughter Ivanka’s appearance and talked about “what it might be like to have sex with her.” This prompted a rebuke from his chief of staff, the book says.
It comes after several former staffers last month spoke about Trump’s pattern of behaving inappropriately with women while president, after a New York jury found him liable for sexually abusing and defaming journalist E. Jean Carroll.
Trump has denied any wrongdoing and is appealing the Carroll judgment, but his alleged behavior toward women may impact his chances of securing another term in the White House in 2024.
“There still are quite a few female leaders from the Trump administration who have held their tongues about the unequal treatment they faced in the administration at best, and the absolute naked sexism they experienced with the hands of Donald Trump at worst,” Taylor told Newsweek.
In his book, Taylor describes Trump’s “undisguised sexism” toward the women in his administration, from relatively low-level aides to cabinet secretaries.
He recalls witnessing such behavior first-hand in meetings with Trump and Kirstjen Nielsen, who was secretary of homeland security from 2017 to 2019.
“When we were with him, Kirstjen did her best to ignore the president’s inappropriate behavior,” Taylor writes in his book. “He called her ‘sweetie’ and ‘honey,’ and critiqued her makeup and outfits.”
After a crass comment from Trump, he recalls Nielsen whispering to him: “Trust me, this is not a healthy workplace for women.” Nielsen has been contacted for comment.
He also recalled that Kellyanne Conway, who served as senior counselor, had once referred to Trump as a “misogynistic bully” after a meeting during which he had “berated” several female leaders in the administration.
Trump had lashed out at Nielsen and other White House staff about the border during that March 2019 meeting, according to a source familiar with the incident.
A source in Conway’s office denied she made the comment. “That is a lie,” the source told Newsweek. “Despite trying to resuscitate the 15 minutes of fame, Miles Taylor should have stayed ‘Anonymous.'”
Taylor also recalled how during one Oval Office meeting, Trump thought he saw Sarah Huckabee Sanders, then White House press secretary, in the room outside it.
It turned out to be one of his personal assistants, not Sanders. “Whoops,” Trump responded, according to Taylor. “I was going to say, ‘Man, Sarah, you’ve lost a lot of weight!'”
Sanders, now the governor of Arkansas, has been contacted for comment.
According to Taylor’s book, the worst of the behavior was Trump’s lewd comments about his own daughter.
“Aides said he talked about Ivanka Trump’s breasts, her backside, and what it might be like to have sex with her, remarks that once led John Kelly to remind the president that Ivanka was his daughter,” Taylor writes.
“Afterward, Kelly retold that story to me in visible disgust. Trump, he said, was ‘a very, very evil man.'”
Trump’s spokesperson has been contacted for comment. Kelly, who was White House chief of staff from 2017 to 2019, has been contacted for comment.
Taylor says he believes Trump remains unchanged as he leads the race for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination, and fears a second Trump term could be far worse.
“He’s a pervert, he’s difficult to deal with,” the source told Newsweek. “This is still the same man and, incredibly, we’re considering electing him to the presidency again.”
Taylor, a longstanding member of the Republican Party until he left in 2022, said it’s important to think about the types of people Trump would bring into a second term.
“This man is closing the door to all kinds of potential talent, so you would expect even more dangerous people in a second term,” he said.
“He’s setting a very vile tone within the Republican Party, and in a sense has normalized pretty derisive views towards women in general. I mean, it’s why we’ve seen other MAGA candidates that carry such baggage, like Trump. That’s why we’ve seen copycats pop up around the country.”
Taylor’s 2018 op-ed in The New York Times, under the pen name “Anonymous” and headlined “I Am Part of the Resistance Inside the Trump Administration,” was fiercely critical of Trump.
He revealed that he was the author in 2020 as he campaigned against Trump’s re-election. He is now a member of the centrist Forward Party.
In a CNN town hall immediately after the Carroll judgment, Trump repeated prior claims that he did not know who she was.
He has repeatedly denied behaving inappropriately toward women and has said that the allegations against him are politically motivated.
Trump has a history of making what critics deem inappropriate comments about his daughter Ivanka. In a 2006 appearance on ABC talk show The View alongside her, he said that “if Ivanka weren’t my daughter, perhaps I’d be dating her. Isn’t that terrible? How terrible? Is that terrible?”
In a 2015 interview with Rolling Stone, he reportedly said that “she’s really something, and what a beauty, that one. If I weren’t happily married and, ya know, her father…”
In a 2016 interview with CBS News about her father’s attitude to women, Ivanka Trump said that he was “not a groper”. “He has total respect for women,” she said. “He believes ultimately in merit.”