The staffer, Alva Johnson, alleged in an interview with the Washington Post that then-candidate Trump grabbed her hand and attempted to kiss her on the lips while exiting an RV ahead of a rally in Tampa, Flordia on August 24, 2016. She told the Post that she jerked her head to the side and the kiss landed on the side of her mouth. It was “super-creepy and inappropriate,” she said.
Johnson alleges in her lawsuit, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Flordia, that the incident left her with emotions of anguish. “I immediately felt violated because I wasn’t expecting it or wanting it,” the campaign staffer told the newspaper. “I can still see his lips coming straight for my face.”
In a statement, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders dismissed the allegations, describing the case as “absurd on its face.”
“This never happened and is directly contradicted by multiple highly credible eye witness accounts,” Sanders said.
According to Johnson, then-Florida Attorney General and Trump surrogate Pam Bondi was a witness to the unwanted kiss.
Bondi dismissed Johnson’s accusation to the newspaper, saying she never saw the candidate leaning in to kiss Johnson.
Further, Johnson also claims the campaign discriminated against her by compensating her with wages lower than her white co-workers. Trump campaign officials have also denied the claim.