Associated Press reporter Steve Peoples tweeted on Wednesday that Donald Trump's campaign manager and senior transition team adviser, Kellyanne Conway, accused a high school student of bringing up the sexual assault allegations against the president-elect to "make news." Peoples tweeted a questioner identified as a 17-year-old female high school student, who asked Conway, "how, as a woman, she reconciled Trump's comments re: sexual assault," and Conway allegedly responded "For you to use sexual assault to try to make news here is unfortunate." Trump has consistently and adamantly denied the multiple allegations regarding his sexual behavior, saying in October at a campaign rally, "I am a victim of one of the great political smear campaigns in the history of our country." Bustle has reached out to the Trump transition team for comment on the alleged Conway exchange.
Peoples tweeted shortly thereafter that the high school student identified herself to him as the daughter of David Corn, the Washington bureau chief of Mother Jones. Peoples did not specify in his tweets where the public event featuring Conway was talking place, but Conway was a featured speaker at the University of Virginia's Center for Politics' 18th Annual American Democracy Conference Wednesday morning. Larry Sabato, the director of the center, tweeted around the same time as Peoples, thanking Conway "for spending so much time with my students."
As sexual assault allegations against Trump came out during his presidential campaign, Conway vociferously defended him. After Trump was pressed about the allegations during the second presidential debate by moderator Anderson Cooper, Conway criticized Cooper for doing so, saying on Fox News' Fox & Friends, "I think there's something there, because this term 'sexual assault' has been bandied about, and I will tell you as somebody who's worked with and certainly has in my life, as I'm sure we all do, victims of sexual assault, it demeans them to equate that with this for political purposes."
Conway also defended Trump by citing that he had never sexually assaulted her or acted inappropriately towards her. She told CNN in October, "This is a man I've been alone with many times who's never been anything but gracious and [a] gentleman and elevated me to the top level of his campaign, the way he's elevated women in the Trump organization for decades, because he respects women."