Former Trump Staffer Files Gender Discrimination Complaint, Says She Was Paid Far Less than Male Peers
You don't say.
Wow, real twist in the news today, folks! According to The New York Times, Donald Trump may have paid a female employee less than her male peers, punished her based on her gender, and made an inappropriate comment about her and a “young” female volunteer’s looks. Truly shocking behavior from a man who has basically made ostentatious misogyny into a successful personal brand.
Elizabeth Mae Davidson, formerly Trump’s field organizer in Davenport, Iowa, filed a discrimination complaint against Trump on Thursday with the Davenport Civil Rights Commission. According to The New York Times, Davison’s complaint alleges
[…] that men doing the same jobs were paid more and were allowed to plan and speak at rallies, while her requests to do so were ignored. She also said that when she and a young female volunteer met Mr. Trump at a rally last summer, he told them, “You guys could do a lot of damage,” referring to their looks.
Davidson told the Times that she was paid $2,000 a month during her employment with the campaign, and was categorized as “part-time” because she also worked as a paralegal. She alleges that several men who held the same title as her were paid $3,500 to $4,000 a month, despite one of those men also holding a day job as a lawyer.
Davidson was fired from the campaign on January 14th, the day after she was quoted in a New York Times article that depicted Trump’s Iowa efforts as an utter shit-show (or, in the Times‘ words, “amateurish and halting, committing basic organizing errors.”) The article included Davidson’s interaction with a Trump volunteer:
As people streamed in, a Trump field representative, Elizabeth Mae Davidson, sought to enlist volunteers as precinct leaders.
“What does that entail?” asked Selena Jacobs, who had never caucused before.
“You stand up and say why you want to support Mr. Trump,” Ms. Davidson said.
“Hmm,” Ms. Jacobs replied, adding that she was not sure she would speak well in public.
“I think you would, you’re pretty,” Ms. Davidson said. “We’ll give you a script to read. We’ll have trainings here locally.”
Ms. Jacobs was not convinced, but she said she planned to attend the caucus to vote for Mr. Trump.
The article went on to describe Davidson as “one of the campaign’s most effective organizers,” and noted that “she has recruited captains for nearly all of the 65 precincts in Scott County, in many cases more than one captain per precinct.”
In her discrimination complaint, Davidson says that when she was fired, she was told she had broken a nondisclosure agreement by making “disparaging comments about senior campaign leaders to third parties.” Davidson denies making disparaging comments to the media, and alleges that male district representatives were quoted in news accounts but not fired.
Speaking to the Times, Trump addressed his “you guys could do a lot of damage” remark, but not the accusations of gender discrimination:
“That is not the worst thing that could be said,” Mr. Trump said. “But I never said it. It’s not in my vocabulary.”
He added that he did not know Ms. Davidson but that in checking with his staff, he was told she was a disgruntled employee. “My people tell me she did a terrible job.”
The Wrap quotes Davidson as saying, “Some of the bad things about him I dismissed, because I was working for the candidate. Now I’m more critical, especially how he treats women.”
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