Donald Trump has long had a fetish for beauty pageants. This was brought to the forefront in the first presidential debate when Hillary Clinton slammed him for the fat-shaming comments he has made towards Venezuelan Miss Universe 1996. But new leaked audio shows that was just the tip of the iceberg.
“One of the worst things [Trump] said was about a woman in a beauty contest. He loves beauty contests, supporting them and hanging around them,” said Hillary. “And he called this woman ‘Miss Piggy.’ Then he called her ‘Miss Housekeeping,’ because she was Latina. Donald, she has a name. Her name is Alicia Machado, and she has become a U.S. citizen, and you can bet she’s going to vote this November.”
Trump owned the Miss Teen USA, Miss Universe, and Miss USA pageants from 1996 to 2015—when NBC and Univision dumped Trump’s Miss Universe following his racist rhetoric claiming all Mexicans are rapists. Trump decided that too many ugly women ended up in the final competition, so he instituted a new policy: “The Trump Rule.”
The Daily Beast reports: “Dubbed “The Trump Rule,” the ex-reality host would oversee a pre-screening of the Miss USA contestants in revealing outfits and play his own personal game of Hot or Not, dividing the women into groups. He’d then demand that each beauty contestant name another contestant they felt was the most beautiful, and separate the contestants accordingly.”
You can hear the leaked audio of The Donald implementing the “Trump Rule” here:
In the audio recording, Trump can be heard “inspecting” the Miss USA 2009 contestants. He orders them around by name, ogling the women and objectifying them in his own special degrading manner. More than two dozen times he mumbles the word “beautiful.”
“West Virginia, West Virginia—get over here. Beautiful,” utters Trump. “I knew a girl from West Virginia once—she drove me crazy…I loved her. She had no makeup, no nothing. They didn’t know about makeup. You know, in West Virginia, they didn’t know about makeup, they didn’t know about cellulite. Just beautiful.”
Trump can be heard explaining the Trump Rule to the women and then goes on to implement it.
“As I told you, many of you have already been chosen—so it doesn’t even matter. But as the Miss Universe Organization and the Miss USA Organization, we get to choose a certain number,” he said. “You know why we do that? Because years ago when I first bought it, we chose ten people—I chose none. And I get here, and the most beautiful people were never chosen! And I went nuts!”
“So we call it ‘The Trump Rule,’” he added. “It’s called The Trump Rule—and we get to choose.”
Former Miss California USA 2009 and Miss USA 2009 runner-up, Carrie Prejean, described the demeaning process in her autobiography Still Standing.
“We were told to put on our opening number outfits—they were nearly as revealing as our swimsuits—and line up for him on stage. Donald Trump walked out with his entourage and inspected us closer than any general ever inspected a platoon. He would stop in front of a girl, look her up and down, and say, ‘Hmmm.’ Then he would go on and do the same thing to the next girl. He took notes in a little pad as he went along,” wrote Prejean.
Then, Trump called each woman forward and asked her, “Tell me, who’s the most beautiful woman here?”
“In this way, Donald Trump made his way through all the girls,” Prejean wrote. “As he did, he motioned those girls he liked over to one side, leaving the discards to one side of the stage…It became clear that the point of the whole exercise was for him to divide the room between girls he personally found attractive and those he did not.”
“Many of the girls found this exercise humiliating. Some of the girls were sobbing backstage after he left, devastated to have failed even before the competition really began to impress ‘The Donald,’” she continued. “Most of us respected Donald Trump as an amazing businessman and leader—and certainly I still do. But we naturally felt sorry for the girls who were left in the ‘reject’ line. Even those of us who were among the chosen couldn’t feel very good about it—it was as though we had been stripped bare.”
Trump ended up stripping Prejean of her title after scantily clad pictures from lingerie photo shoot and a sex tape turned up.
Featured image via Thos Robinson/Getty Images