Clinton campaign accuses Trump of ‘unhinged’ attack on Alicia Machado

Clinton campaign accuses Trump of ‘unhinged’ attack on Alicia Machado

The Republicans Twitter tirade against former Miss Universe has been labeled a Machado meltdown after Clinton brought her story to national attention

Donald Trump was accused by the Clinton campaign of unhinged behaviour toward a former Miss Universe winner on Friday after he fired off a tirade of personal attacks against her in the middle of the night.

Launching the fourth day of a war of words against Alicia Machado that is causing consternation among Republicans, the partys candidate accused Machado of having a disgusting past after she criticised his attitude toward women.

Machado captured national attention during the US presidential debate on Monday when Hillary Clinton recalled how Trump had first labeled her Miss Piggy and publicly shamed her for putting on weight when he owned the beauty contest.

But widespread sympathy garnered by the Venezuelan-born actress who earlier told the Guardian she had struggled with years of eating disorders after incident appears to have riled the celebrity property tycoon.

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In a string of tweets sent between 5:14am and 5:30am from New York, Trump alluded to unproven accusations against Machado and claimed she had been helped to become a US citizen so Democrats could exploit her.

Wow, Crooked Hillary was duped and used by my worst Miss U. Hillary floated her as an angel without checking her past, which is terrible! wrote Trump.

Did Crooked Hillary help disgusting (check out sex tape and past) Alicia M become a US citizen so she could use her in the debate? he added.

The Clinton campaign denies playing any part in Machados citizenship application, but seized on the apparently false rumours of a sex tape as evidence of an attempt to smear her in revenge for speaking out.

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This is unhinged, even for Trump, responded Hillary Clintons Twitter account on Friday. What kind of man stays up all night to smear a woman with lies and conspiracy theories? (The tweet was not signed H, which Clinton uses to indicate she has written messages herself.)

Machado posed topless for Playboy in Mexico and briefly took part in a risqu, but censored, scene on a reality TV show, but the New York Times says fact-checkers have found no evidence to support conservative rumours of a sex tape.

Trumps apparent obsession with attacking Machado has added to worry among many Republicans that his campaign has lost focus since Clinton got under his skin in Mondays debate.

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Alicia deserves praise for courageously standing up to Trumps attacks. And he has the gall to blame her and say he helped? added the Clinton campaign. When something gets under Donalds thin skin, he lashes out and cant let go. This is dangerous for a president.

Trump is on the verge of blowing it, wrote the former George W Bush press secretary Ari Fleischer on Friday. Free advice: Focus on Hillary. No one else. Hillary is your opponent. No one else is.

A Trump campaign aide in Florida also resigned on Friday citing concerns with the candidates behaviour. It is clear the campaign is now going in a direction I am no longer comfortable with and I have decided to move on, Healy Baumgardner told Bloomberg.

Donald Trump has alluded to unproven accusations against the former Miss Universe winner. Photograph: Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty Images

Trump, however, seems to be following a pattern of personal and sexually explicit attacks against women who have slighted him. As well as threatening to introduce Clinton sex scandals into the next presidential debate, he also suggested a Fox News moderator in the first primary debate was hostile toward him because she was menstruating.

It is also not the first time Trump has expressed an interest in sex tapes. In one of Trumps many appearances on Howard Sterns radio show he said he had watched a leaked video of Paris Hilton having sex.

Now, somebody who a lot of people dont give credit to but is in actuality very beautiful is Paris Hilton, Trump told Stern. Ive known Paris Hilton from the time shes 12, her parents are friends of mine, and the first time I saw her she walked into the room and I said, Who the hell is that? At 12, I wasnt interested but she was beautiful.

Trump obsessively bullies Rosie ODonnell an accomplished actor. He insulted Kim Kardashian for her weight when she was pregnant, added Clintons Twitter account in her response to what she called day 5 of the Machado meltdown on Friday. Weve heard Donalds insults for years, and his policies reflect this disregard even contempt for women.

Her campaign spokeswoman, Jennifer Palmieri, later claimed the distasteful behaviour was backfiring for Trump and ridiculed his pre-dawn breakdown. Where is he now? Is he awake? 5.30am it stopped. I dont understand.

Additional reporting by Adam Gabbatt in New York

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