It would be a fool’s game to attempt to assemble a comprehensive list of all the vitriolic epithets Trump has used to describe women. There’s Miss Piggy, nasty, and horseface — it forever goes on. Lunging sexist insults is among Trump’s favorite pastimes, and during a manic appearance on Fox Business this morning, Trump spewed yet another one, calling vice-presidential candidate Kamala Harris “this monster.”
While Trump sounded more agitated than usual, much of the president’s call-in appearance wasn’t atypical. Per usual, he tried to argue that he’s “done more for the Black community than any president except Abraham Lincoln,” and he went after Joe Biden’s mental faculties. But when he homed in on Harris as a target, his tone became noticeably more vitriolic.
“This monster who was onstage with Mike Pence,” Trump began, emphatically pronouncing that second word, before misrepresenting the Biden campaign’s stance on fracking. (During her own presidential run, Harris came out against the controversial drilling technique, which is extremely detrimental to the environment and public health; the Biden campaign, however, has proudly vowed to not ban it.) And then, for emphasis, Trump called her “this monster” once more.
While Trump is undiscriminating when it comes to spewing sexist insults, he typically saves his most malicious ones for women of color: He referred to former White House aide Omarosa Manigault Newman as both a “dog” and “crying lowlife,” and called respected White House correspondent April Ryan a “loser” who “doesn’t know what the hell she’s doing” on live television.
But ever since Biden announced Harris as his running mate, Trump has fixated on her. For the most part, this isn’t all that surprising; she poses a direct threat to his hold on the presidency. But as Rebecca Traister writes on the Cut, Trump is especially eager to go after Harris because disparaging a woman — and especially a woman of color — is familiar to him. He isn’t as practiced when it comes to attacking the character of someone like Biden, “an entirely average older white man who peddles bipartisan comity and just-left-of-center politics.” By going after Harris he yet again reclaims his favorite weapon: “the ability to persuade voters that their white capitalist patriarchy is under direct attack.”