Just to recap. Tiny super PAC runs minor (less than $1000 in value) Facebook ad prior to Utah primary. Ad features a mostly nude, and very aesthetically pleasing, Melania Trump asking if this is what you want the First Lady to look like. (The actual question is really whether we want a man as president who would permit his wife to be used as masturbatory material on perhaps all seven continents). Donald Trump has ass handed to him by Utah’s voters. Causation? Who knows. Donald Trump goes bats**t crazy and accuses Ted Cruz of being behind the ad. Donald Trump adds bats**t to the bats**t inferno by accusing Ted Cruz of buying the rights to the image and giving it to the super PAC. Donald Trump squirts flaming, gasoline infused bats**t onto the bats**t apocalypse by tweeting a very unflattering image of Heidi Cruz. Donald Trump pushes out story of Ted Cruz having FIVE mistresses to his friend David (I swear I’m not making this up) Pecker, who owns National Enquirer. The only on-the-record interview was Donald Trump confidant, Roger Stone. #TrumpLovesPecker became a trending item on Twitter.
As you can see, this has been an immensely amusing story from the blogging perspective and has convinced me that Donald Trump is a couple Trump Steaks short of a dinner for three.
Now Jake Tapper looks at the story and clearly shows what kind of an unhinged and sleazy liar Donald Trump actually is:
TAPPER: There has been a lot of back and forth between Donald Trump and Senator Ted Cruz about one another’s wives. It all started, Donald Trump says, when a super PAC, against him, posted a rather racy photograph of Trump’s wife, Melania, and, well take a listen to Trump’s version of events.
[Audio clip, because Trump is increasingly afraid to appear in person for interviews, of Donald Trump spewing bats**t craziness.]
TAPPER: Is that true? Did Cruz’s campaign, or Cruz, buy the rights to this photograph and give it to the super PAC. And there’s evidence that Cruz, 100%, knew about this, and was behind this?
No. No. It’s not true.
So how did this happen? The anti-Trump super PAC, Make America Awesome, used a photograph that originally was published in a 2000 photo spread in British GQ. Make America Awesome used this picture in a Facebook ad targeting Mormon voters in Utah ahead of the March 22 state Republican caucuses. The ad sparked this intense battle between the Republican candidates with Trump accusing Cruz of running the photo, Cruz responding that it wasn’t his campaign that did it and Trump, then, retweeting a rather unflattering photograph of Cruz’s wife, Heidi, next to a flattering photograph of Melania Trump.
Trump has said that Cruz and his campaign collaborated with the anti-Trump super PAC in securing the rights to the photograph for the ad and he repeated that just Tuesday at the CNN town hall.
[Video clip of Trump in spittle-flecked rage.]
Let’s be clear. It would be against the law for Ted Cruz or his campaign to coordinate with the super PAC. So what Trump is suggesting would violate federal regulations. And there is no evidence that the Trump campaign has provided to back up his accusation. We contacted the Trump campaign. We have not received a response.
Condé Nast Britain, the publisher of British GQ no longer owns the rights to that photograph of Melania Trump. The man who does is the photographer, Antoine Verglas, and when FactCheck.org contacted him and asked about whether or not the super PAC or Ted Cruz or the Cruz campaign had reached out to secure the rights, Antoine Verglas said, “No. Not anyone.”
A reminder to all the politicians out there, you are perfectly entitled to your own opinions. You are not, I repeat, not entitled to your own facts.
Hopefully, this will be the end of Donald Trump’s Melania hissy fit. If Donald Trump does not get the nomination, we will look back on this as one or those turning points where Trump’s douchebaggery, his estrangement with the truth, and his obvious dislike and disdain for women who are a) fully clothed and b) not simply arm candy became obvious.