A prominent group of Republicans opposing Donald Trump have released a new advertisement attacking the US president for his support of Ghislaine Maxwell, after the alleged “madam” for paedophile billionaire Jeffrey Epstein was arrested earlier this month.
The Lincoln Project, which was founded by current and former high-profile conservatives such as George Conway, husband of White House adviser Kellyanne Conway, posted the ad to Twitter on Friday with the caption: “What does Ghislaine Maxwell have on @realDonaldTrump?”
It shows Mr Trump berating a number of female journalists – with the ad saying at one point, “This is how Donald Trump speaks to accomplished women” – before flashing to a recent White House press briefing in which the president spoke about his relationship with Ms Maxwell over the years.
“I just wish her well, frankly,” Mr Trump is heard saying in the briefing.
A woman narrating the advertisement then says: “Just what does Maxwell have on Donald Trump? Why does he demean other women but treat the head of an alleged sex slave ring with respect? Does Donald Trump want Maxwell to keep quiet? America needs to know.”
The Lincoln Project has quickly gained a following on the 2020 presidential campaign trail for its steady stream of advertisements undermining Mr Trump, with criticisms ranging from his connections to Maxwell to his boastful statements about passing a cognitive exam that tests for signs of dementia or other neurological illnesses.
Its latest ad was retweeted nearly 35,000 times in less than a day, picking up over 1.3 million views.
On Wednesday, the president stirred controversy when he was asked about Ms Maxwell at the White House press podium and appeared to express support for the embattled former-socialite-turned-recluse, who was found hiding at a luxury estate in New Hampshire following Epstein’s imprisonment and suicide in federal custody.
“I don’t know. I really haven’t been following it too much,” he said of the developments surrounding Ms Maxwell. “I just wish her well, frankly. I’ve met her numerous times over the years, especially since I lived in Palm Beach.”
He added: “I wish her well, whatever it is.”
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