Sunday, October 21, 2018


Someone on the right must be afraid of Cory Booker, because he's now the subject of a transparently fake accusation of sexual assault in a men's room.

The conspiracy-minded right-wing site The Last Refuge (aka The Conservative Treehouse) links to the accusation, by a man who's not giving his real name. The accusation has also shown up at Twitchy and American Thinker, among other right-wing sites, as well as at Reddit's r/The_Donald and r/MensRights.

The accuser writes:
Cory Booker Sexually Assaulted Me
and why it won’t matter to the #metoo movement

Yes, you read that right. The man who would be the modern incarnation of the Thracian Gladiator turned rebellion leader, once tried to aggressively force me to give him a blowie in my (then) workplace restroom. That may be a hard pill to swallow, given Mr. Booker’s distinguished political pedigree as a champion of liberal populist issues and marginalized communities. But despite his whimsical penchant for theatrical displays of impassioned defiance, he’s just another asshole.
The author goes on to claim a progressive political orientation:
If we were to travel just 4 years back in time, you and I would find solidarity on the subject of Cory Booker. As a matter of fact, he was a hero of mine. I was and still am, a liberal in principal with a record of voting exclusively for Democrats since I was 18 with the exception of the 2016 election cycle.
Already we should be suspicious. He claims to have been assaulted by Booker, but his first words about Booker are a mockery of Booker's "Spartacus" remark during the Brett Kavanaugh hearings. (Among right-wingers, Booker is now sneeringly called "Spartacus" as readily as Elizabeth Warren is called "Pocahontas.") The accuser calls Booker "a champion of liberal populist issues" -- how many liberals call themselves "populists"? And he voted for Democrats every year except 2016? Is he saying he voted for Jill Stein? Stein voters tend not think of Booker as a progressive hero. Or is he implying that he voted for Trump, presumably to make himself more sympathetic to the real intended audience for this tall tale?

Our complainant says he met Booker "in an informal group setting," then went to use a single-occupancy restroom and found Booker using it. The dialogue gets a tad unrealistic at this point:
When I opened the door, Mr. Booker was there. He smiled and very gregariously said "Hey!" We engaged in some brief idle chitchat in the entryway and then he asked me to speak in private.... He pulled me into the restroom, albeit not too forcefully and slowly pushed me against the restroom wall. He said that "Being a hero was a serious turn-on". He continued, "The Senate appreciates fine citizens like you. Especially this Senator." He then put his left hand on my groin, over my jeans and began to rub.
With those lines of dialogue, I think we've settled the question of whether this is a plausible account.

Booker, according to this account, tried to force the accuser down onto his knees so he could perform oral sex. The accuser managed to pull away and escape.

The lifelong liberal now has a lawyer -- and what do you know, she's a Republican operative:
... I reached out to two lawyers anonymously. One of them got back to me; Harmeet Dhillon of the Dhillon Law Group, a 1st amendment trial lawyer and RNC committee member.... Ms. Dhillon responded to me with respectful immediacy, offering candid advice and compassion tempered with pragmatism.
Dhillon is a former vice chair of the California Republican Party. She was retained by right-wing hero James Damore when he decided to file a complaint against Google with the National Labor Relations Board. Dhillon spoke at the 2016 Republican convention and was under consideration to be the head of the civil rights division in the Trump Justice Department. Yeah, just the person you'd reach out to if you were a dyed-in-the-wool progressive.

The accuser goes on to say that he's contacted Ronan Farrow, at Dhillon's recommendation, but without success. He says he expects no one to believe him because he's not a woman and because the "modern American media apparatus ... caters to reductive, easy to follow narratives with a clear view of who is the good guy and who is the bad guy." Basically, he's a self-styled liberal charging the media with liberal bias, which is not what a liberal would say, but is what a fake liberal scripted by a conservative would say.

Oh, and did I mention that his Twitter screen name is Deep Throat? Oh yeah, I'm sure that's what you'd call yourself if you were nearly forced to commit oral sex and were still traumatized by the assault.

I don't know how much this will matter. A grifter named Larry Sinclair spent years accusing Barack Obama of having a secret gay life; he tried to link Obama to the murder of Donald Young, a gay choirmaster who was killed in 2007 (the allegation was that Young was shot so he wouldn't reveal his affair with Obama). Sinclair's charges were never taken seriously, even though various right-wing sites still trot him out on occasion. Nevertheless, this Booker story is fake news that will be cited as gospel by right-wingers if the senator does well in the 2020 race. You right-wing uncle will send you an email about it the day Booker announces his 2020 candidacy, trust me.


UPDATE: I'm reminded by FlipYrWhig in comments that Harmeet Dhillon was a nasty movement conservative back in her undergraduate days:
Dhillon attended Dartmouth College, where she wrote for the college's conservative paper, the Dartmouth Review, and ultimately was named editor.

In October 1988, the weekly made headlines when it published a satirical column likening the college president to Adolf Hitler, and the effects of his campus policies to the Holocaust.
As The New York Times noted at the time, the title of the article was
"Ein Reich, Ein Volk, Ein Freedmann," a play on a Nazi slogan, "One Empire, One People, One Leader," but substituting and misspelling the name of James O. Freedman, the president of the school in Hanover, N.H., for "Fuhrer."

Using the analogy of Nazi Germany and the Holocaust, the column by James Garrett describes how "Der Freedmann" and his associates rid the campus of conservatives. A drawing on the cover of the next issue, on Oct. 26, also depicted Mr. Freedman, who has been critical of The Review, as Hitler....

Harmeet Dhillon, editor in chief of The Review, denied that the column was anti-Semitic, saying its point had been misinterpreted by people "trying to twist the issue to their own ends."

Miss Dhillon, speaking for the paper and the columnist, said the column sought to compare "liberal fascism" with other forms of fascism and was not meant to be taken as a trivialization of the Holocaust or to show "callous disregard" of its horrors. She said the idea was to show how Mr. Freedman and the administration had mistreated conservative students.

"I'm very disturbed about the response to it," she said. "I'm very surprised, very very surprised."
Dinesh D'Souza and Laura Ingraham are also Dartmouth Review alums, although they didn't overlap with Dhillon.

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