Former White House press secretary Sarah Sanders accused President Donald Trump of making a sexual joke about her and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. Sanders detailed the encounter in her new memoir, which comes out next week. An advance review by The Guardian revealed the unsettling story of Kim's wink at Sanders.
Sanders was with Kim and Trump at a summit in Singapore in 2018 when this incident reportedly occurred. The three of them were alone with a handful of aides, Sanders wrote, and Kim and Trump chatted about sports, particularly women's soccer. At that point, Sanders said she looked up "to notice Kim staring at me," adding: "We made direct eye contact and Kim nodded and appeared to wink at me."
Sanders wrote that the wink put her off. She wrote: "I was stunned. I quickly looked down and continued taking notes. All I could think was, 'What just happened? Surely Kim Jong-un did not just mark me!?'"
However, when Trump heard about it, he had a more crass response. Sanders told the then chief of staff John Kelly about the wink, who in turn, told Trump. Back in the limousine, Trump reportedly said: "Kim Jong-un hit on you! "He did! He f—ing hit on you!"
According to Sanders, she said, "Sir, please stop," but the president persisted, taking it even further. He implied that Sanders should engage in a sexual relationship with Kim on behalf of the U.S.
"Well, Sarah, that settles it. You're going to North Korea and taking one for the team!" Trump said, according to Sanders. "Your husband and kids will miss you, but you'll be a hero to your country!" Trump and Kelly then "howled with laugher," the book reads.0comments
This account is just one significant anecdote from Sanders' book, Speaking for Myself: Faith, Freedom, and the Fight of Our Lives Inside the Trump White House. According to The Guardian, the book is not negative about Trump overall; in fact, it is described as "a paean to the president by a loyal follower." Still, it joins a large supply of evidence against the president in accusations of sexual harassment.
Sanders joined the Trump administration in 2017, replacing former press secretary Sean Spicer. Reporters condemned her for two years before she left the White House in June of 2019. The reason for her departure was never made explicitly clear, but she went on to become a contributor for Fox News. Her book will be available on Tuesday, Sept. 8.