LOS ANGELES (AP) — Two more women came forward Friday to accuse Donald Trump of unwanted sexual touching, including a former contestant from a reality show that starred the Republican presidential nominee.
The latest accounts come after several women reported in recent days that Trump groped or kissed them without their consent.
At a campaign rally in North Carolina on Friday, Trump sought to discredit his accusers. He said because there were no witnesses to the interactions, the allegations were not credible.
“Right now I am being viciously attacked with lies and smears,” Trump said at an outdoor amphitheater. “It’s a phony deal. I have no idea who these women are.”
Trump also suggested the women who have come forward to accuse him were not physically attractive enough to merit his attention. “Believe me, she would not be my first choice, that I can tell you,” he said when speaking of one of the women.
Summer Zervos, a former contestant on “The Apprentice,” said Trump made unwanted sexual advances toward her at a Beverly Hills hotel in 2007, while photographer Kristin Anderson alleged Trump sexually assaulted her in a New York nightclub in the early 1990s.
Zervos, 41, appeared at a news conference Friday with Gloria Allred, a well-known Los Angeles attorney. Zervos was a contestant on “The Apprentice” in 2006 and said she later contacted Trump to inquire about a job with one of his businesses.
Zervos said she had an initial meeting with Trump, where he discussed a potential job with her. When they parted, he kissed her on the lips and asked for her phone number, she said.
She said weeks later Trump called to invite her to meet him at the Beverly Hills Hotel, where she said she was expecting to have dinner with the New York billionaire. Instead, she described a series of unwanted kisses and touching by Trump, which she said she repeatedly rejected.
“He tried to kiss me again … and I said, ‘Dude, you’re tripping right now,’ attempting to make it clear I was not interested,” she said.
Zervos said Trump eventually stopped and began talking as if they were in a job interview. She said she was later offered a low-paying job at a Trump-owned golf course.
At the time, Trump had recently married his third and current wife, Melania Trump, and the couple had an infant son.
Zervos said she is a Republican and has no political agenda in coming forward. Allred said her client told her parents and others about the incident shortly after it occurred.
In a statement released by his campaign, Trump denied he was ever alone in a hotel room with Zervos and claimed to have only a vague recollection of meeting her. He lashed out at the media for creating “a theater of absurdity that threatens to tear our democratic process apart and poison the minds of the American public.”
Late Friday, the Trump campaign released a statement in which a cousin of Servos said he was “shocked and bewildered” by her account.
John Barry of Mission Viejo, California, said in the statement that Zervos “wishes she could still be on reality TV, and in an effort to get that back she’s saying all of these negative things about Mr. Trump.”
In a story published online Friday, Anderson told The Washington Post that she was sitting on a couch with friends at a New York nightclub in the early 1990s when someone’s hand reached up her skirt and touched her through her underwear.
Anderson, then in her early 20s, said she pushed the hand away, turned around and recognized Trump as the man who had groped her. Then recently divorced, Trump was then a frequent presence in the New York tabloids, and he was regular presence on the Manhattan club scene.
“He was so distinctive looking — with the hair and the eyebrows. I mean, nobody else has those eyebrows,” Anderson, 46, told the newspaper. She said the assault was random and occurred with “zero conversation.”
Anderson did not respond to a phone message from The Associated Press. She told the newspaper said she does not back Trump or Hillary Clinton, the Democratic nominee.
The Post said it contacted Anderson after a friend she had told about the incident recounted it to a reporter. Other friends also told the Post that Anderson recounted the same story to them years ago.
Zervos’ and Anderson’s decisions to speak publicly about her experience follows last week’s disclosure by the Post of a 2005 video in which Trump boasted that his celebrity gave him the ability to grab women “by the p—-. You can do anything.” Trump apologized for those remarks, but also dismissed them as “locker-room talk.”
Also Friday, Melinda McGillivray, 36, of Palm Springs, Florida, told the AP that Trump’s denial in last Sunday’s presidential debate that he had ever groped women prompted her to come forward after years of brushing off an incident from 2003.
She told The Palm Beach Post for a story published on Thursday that while she was backstage at a concert at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort, when he grabbed her buttocks.
“I wanted to do this so I can be a role model for my daughter,” McGillivray said. “I wanted to be that courageous woman that she sees every day, but in that moment she saw vulnerability and she saw a scared little girl.”
Biesecker reported from Washington. Associated Press writers Jill Colvin in Greensboro, North Carolina, and Kelli Kennedy in Lake Worth, Florida, contributed to this report.
Follow Michael Biesecker and Michael R. Blood on Twitter at: http://twitter.com/mbieseck and https://twitter.com/MichaelRBloodAP
SEATTLE (AP) — The Latest on a powerful storm in the Pacific Northwest (all times local):
The National Weather Service in Portland, Oregon, is urging people to stay off roads as multiple streets in the city were flooded and impassable after heavy rains hit the area Friday evening.
News outlets reported cars were stranded at flooded intersections and on roads throughout the city. Two eastbound lanes of Interstate 84 downtown were closed due to high water, the light rail system was experiencing delays and all streetcar service was suspended.
The weather service in Portland also said anyone living near small creeks and streams that typically flood need to pay extra attention through Friday.
Coast Guard officials say a rescue is underway for 40 teenagers and six adults who became stranded at an outdoor recreation camp on the Olympic Peninsula west of Port Angeles.
U.S. Coast Guard Petty Officer Ali Flockerzi says the group called for help Friday afternoon saying they had lost power at Camp David Jr. County Park and that trees were blocking the way out.
Flockerzi says the Coast Guard trailered a boat to another location on the same lake as the camp and was using it as a ferry to bring campers out in groups. She estimated it would take about six trips and nearly six hours, to get everyone out of the camp and to a waiting bus.
No injuries have been reported.
Officials say a 4-year-old boy and his father have been injured by a falling tree branch in West Seattle.
The injuries came amid a storm that brought heavy rains and high winds to the Northwest, including a tornado in Manzanita, Oregon.
Thousands of people are without power in the region.
The Seattle Fire Department posted Friday on Twitter that the child suffered serious injuries and the father minor injuries. They were being taken to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.
The department said it didn’t immediately have further information about the injuries or circumstances.
The mayor of Manzanita, Oregon, has declared a state of emergency in the wake of a tornado that tore through downtown.
The declaration by Mayor Garry Bullard is necessary for the beach town to be eligible for federal disaster money. The inventory of damage from Friday’s tornado is incomplete, but photos and videos show toppled trees, downed power poles, a mangled deck and some wrecked downtown businesses.
Tillamook County Sheriff Andy Long says two businesses are confirmed destroyed and one home is uninhabitable. He says other homes have roof damage.
The Red Cross opened a shelter for victims at Calvary Bible Church.
Thousands of people were without power in Seattle as heavy rains and winds moved through the Pacific Northwest.
Seattle City Light reported Friday that more than 15,000 customers were affected by an outage, most in the Queen Anne neighborhood north of downtown.
Extreme weather is moving through the Pacific Northwest. A tornado was reported in Manzanita, Oregon, along the coast.
A gallery owner in Manzanita, Oregon, says what started as a typical beach storm instantly became much more.
Debbie Harmon of the Amanita Gallery says out of nowhere the wind suddenly made a “whoooo” sound.
The whole sky filled with debris as a tornado touched down in the small coastal city. Harmon says “it was just crazy and then it just stopped.”
Next thing, she saw trees scattered in the road and emergency vehicles headed toward the beach area.
A tornado has been reported on the northern Oregon coast.
Tillamook County Sheriff Andy Long says it touched down in the city of Manzanita about 8:20 a.m. He says there are no reports of injuries, but there have been several calls about damage, including one from a woman who says all the windows in her house were blown out.
Long says the county is sending an additional ambulance to Manzanita, just in case it’s needed. He says volunteer firefighters are also being activated.
The National Weather Service issued tornado warnings for southwest Washington and northwest Oregon.
The warnings issued early Friday were in response to a strong thunderstorm that moved through the area. The National Weather Service said there were reports of tornado damage in Manzanita, Oregon, on the coast. No other information was immediately available.
The heavy rain created dangerous conditions for the morning commute, as drivers tried to see out rain-pounded windshields and navigate through standing water on the roads.
Several school districts across the region delayed start times because of the weather.
Strong winds and heavy rain walloped the Pacific Northwest, leaving thousands without power as utility crews prepare for what’s expected to be a rougher storm on Saturday.
In Oregon, Portland General Electric reported that more than 4,000 customers were without power at 5 a.m. Friday. Pacific Power reported that 2,800 customers in coastal communities had no lights, down from a peak of more than 15,000.
Portland had the rainiest Oct. 13 in its history. The National Weather Service says a 103-mph wind gust was recorded at Cape Meares.
In Washington, Puget Sound Energy responded to scattered outages, reporting early Friday that more than 2,800 customers were still affected. Lightning strikes hit the southwest Washington coast Friday morning, and a tornado warning was briefly in effect for Pacific County.
Meteorologists expect a breezy Friday before the remnants of a typhoon hit the region Saturday. Forecasters say wind gusts as high as 70 mph could sweep through Seattle.
SEATTLE (AP) — With Donald Trump on the defensive, Hillary Clinton says she is taking “no satisfaction” in his actions and promising to repair the damage and project a message of unity during the campaign’s final weeks.
Hours after her Republican rival furiously defended himself against multiple allegations of sexual misconduct, Clinton spoke Friday of the need for national healing in a Seattle fundraising speech that also saw her call upon Americans to help her govern if she’s elected president.
“This election is incredibly painful. I take absolutely no satisfaction in what is happening on the other side with my opponent,” Clinton said while visiting a Seattle campaign field office. “I am not at all happy about that because it hurts our country, it hurts our democracy, it sends terrible messages to so many people here at home and around the world.”
The Democratic presidential nominee said earlier at a Seattle fundraiser that while she understands many voters want to “turn away,” her supporters need to help her win the election to “demonstrate the positive, optimistic, confident, unifying vision of America that I believe in and that I think, together, we can demonstrate America’s best days are still ahead of us.”
While President Barack Obama is ending his two terms with high approval ratings, Clinton’s struggles with high unfavorability ratings and questions about her honesty could undermine any electoral mandate she might achieve in November.
So as Trump has dealt with a firestorm that started last week with the release of an 11-year-old videotape of him bragging about kissing and groping women, Clinton is increasingly aiming her message not only at Democrats but at disaffected Republicans and independents turned off by the spectacle.
At her fundraiser at the Paramount Theatre, where Trump backers gathered outside on a blustery day, one bearing a sign that read, “Hillary for Prison 2016,” Clinton struck a tone of conciliation. She said she wanted people “to start looking after each other again,” and that while she would aim to pass laws and seek “some real national commitments,” people needed to support each other at the end of an acrimonious campaign season.
“I will be asking for your help. I need your help not just to win this election but to govern and to heal the divides that exist in our country right now,” Clinton said. “I do believe there isn’t anything we can’t do once we make up our minds to do it.”
The former secretary of state said those challenges extend across the globe, saying she had talked to many foreign leaders who complained about Trump’s praise of Russian President Vladimir Putin or her opponent’s calls for a temporary ban on foreign Muslims entering the country.
“So make no mistake, we do have to repair the damage which he has done, which we will do. But on both domestic and national security grounds, repudiating his candidacy sends exactly the right message,” she said.
Leading in many battleground state polls, Clinton’s team is assessing the possibility of expanding the map to compete in traditional Republican states like Utah, Georgia and Arizona. She is preparing for next week’s final debate in Las Vegas and then an intense stretch of campaigning. While she continues to call Trump unqualified to be president, much of her message appears aimed beyond November — and into a possible first term.
“Bringing people together to solve problems is key to our democracy. There’s no question about it,” Clinton said. “And I want us to do that in a spirit of mutual respect, listening to one another, having each other’s backs.”
On Twitter follow Ken Thomas at @kthomasDC.
MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Two Milwaukee men were charged in federal court Friday with trying to join the Islamic State group by traveling through Mexico to Syria.
Jason Michael Ludke, 35, is charged with attempting to support a foreign terrorist organization, and Yosvany Padilla-Conde, 30, is charged with aiding and abetting Ludke. Both men face up to 20 years in prison if they’re convicted.
According to the complaint, Ludke and Padilla-Conde began corresponding on social media with an undercover FBI employee last month and said they planned to travel to Mexico, where they could get passage to Syria and join the Islamic State group in Iraq.
Ludke said he converted to Islam in 2003 and wanted to live under Shariah law. He also said he was tired of living under the infidel’s system and wanted to strive for paradise.
The undercover FBI employee received an email on Oct. 1 containing a video of Padilla-Conde and Ludke with a handmade Islamic State group flag in the background. Ludke said Padilla-Conde was striving to reach paradise as well, according to the complaint.
The undercover employee told Ludke that people in Mexico would be able to get them passports for Arab counties. On Oct. 5 Ludke told the employee that he and Padilla-Conde were in Texas heading toward El Paso. Police captured them near San Angelo later that day.
Ludke told FBI agents that he and Padilla-Conde left Wisconsin because they couldn’t pay their rent and he was looking to meet his brother-in-law in Mexico, although he couldn’t provide his brother-in-law’s name or information on his whereabouts. Ludke added he and Padilla-Conde discussed traveling to Yemen so Ludke could study Arabic, according to the complaint.
Padilla-Conde told agents he left Wisconsin because he was about to be evicted and Lude wanted to travel to Iraq or Yemen to take part in jihad, an Arabic term for holy war, and often spoke of joining the Islamic State, according to the complaint. He said he tried to talk Ludke out of it, the complaint said.
It wasn’t immediately clear if the men had attorneys. The federal public defender’s office said no defenders were listed for them in Texas. Court records show Ludke appeared without counsel during an initial court appearance in Texas on Wednesday. Padilla-Conde was scheduled to make his initial appearance in Abilene on Monday.
Joshua Van Haften of Madison was charged last year with trying to travel to Syria through Turkey to join the Islamic State. His case is still pending in federal court. A plea hearing has been set for Tuesday.
Associated Press writer Gretchen Ehlke in Milwaukee contributed to this report.
SAN ANTONIO (AP) — San Antonio’s police chief has disciplined 23 officers who donned Donald Trump “Make America Great Again” caps while on duty and in uniform.
The officers were seen in a Trump campaign video wearing the red caps on Tuesday after escorting the Republican presidential candidate to and from a San Antonio fundraiser.
In a statement Friday, Chief William McManus says six supervisors will receive written reprimands and 17 officers will receive written counseling. The officers also will undergo training that the statement says will focus “on the importance of impartiality and fairness in performance of official duties.”
McManus said the officers’ actions are “inconsistent” with department principles.
MADISON, Wis. (AP) — House Speaker Paul Ryan did it again Friday — he spoke about the choices in this year’s elections without uttering the words “Donald Trump.”
Four days after privately telling House Republicans that he would no longer defend or campaign for his party’s presidential nominee, Ryan, R-Wis., tore into Democrat Hillary Clinton and liberals for pursuing a government-heavy agenda for elites. He said a GOP-run Congress would block at least parts of their plans.
But in nearly 45 minutes of remarks to college Republicans, the closest he came to mentioning Trump was in describing the presidential race’s tone and warning students away from behavior that sounded suspiciously like things that have characterized Trump’s now flagging campaign.
“Look, I know this election has taken some dark, sometimes some very dark turns,” Ryan said, without elaborating.
He also advised his audience, “Don’t get into a personality contest, don’t talk about the latest Twitter storm from somebody.”
At other moments, he sounded reminiscent of first lady Michelle Obama, who’s become a Democratic sensation on the campaign trail of late with advice like, “When they go low, you go high.”
“Don’t go to emotion and don’t impugn another person’s emotion,” Ryan told the students. “And when that’s coming at you, take the high ground.”
Ryan’s appearance came a week after the release of a 2005 video showing Trump boasting about forcing sexual contact with women, a blockbuster moment in the campaign. It also followed recent reports in which some women have accused Trump of groping them over past decades, claims he has said are false.
Ryan answered questions from the students — who also did not use Trump’s name — but did not talk to reporters. Similarly, he delivered remarks Thursday to business people without taking questions afterward.
In recent weeks, many congressional Republicans have avoided using Trump’s name, at times using phrases like “our party’s nominee.” Ryan never mentioned Trump during two brief campaign appearances for House candidates in Pennsylvania last week.
After the Trump video was released, Ryan rescinded an invitation for him to appear at a Wisconsin political event last weekend, though he has not dropped support for Trump.
Trump has responded with tweets suggesting a sinister plot and calling Ryan ineffective, highlighting an extraordinary schism between the senior most elected GOP official and the party’s White House candidate. And some GOP lawmakers have threatened to oppose letting Ryan serve as speaker in the new Congress, assuming Republicans remain in control of the House.
Ryan used his remarks to attack Clinton and her Democratic allies, drawing a contrast that many Republicans believe can help their congressional candidates win re-election. Polls show she has surged ahead in the race for the White House, and Ryan has told his fellow House Republicans that he will spend the remaining weeks until the Nov. 8 elections campaigning to help them keep control of the chamber.
He told the students that Democrats want to increase bureaucratic control of peoples’ lives and confirm liberal judges and promised, “A Republican Congress will not stand for this.”
Ryan said Clinton’s “stronger together” slogan actually means, “We are stronger if we are all subject to the state. What she means is we are stronger if we give up our ties of responsibility to one another and hand all of that over to government.”
He also pressed for the GOP agenda that he rolled out last summer that focuses on such issues as cutting regulations, overhauling the tax code and replacing President Barack Obama’s health care law.
Fram reported from Washington. Associated Press writer Donna Cassata in Washington contributed to this report.