Taggart said her first encounter with Trump was when she was at rehearsal for the Miss USA competition
When asked if she was coming forward to aid the Clinton campaign, Taggart replied: "Not one bit"
A former Miss USA contestant alleges that Donald Trump kissed her on the lips without her consent on separate occasions, adding her to the list of people who have accused the GOP nominee of sexual assault in recent days.
Temple Taggart told CNN’s Erin Burnett on “OutFront” Friday that when Trump first kissed her on the lips at a rehearsal for the 1997 Miss USA competition, she excused it as how people on the East Coast greeted one another.
“I was shocked just because I was like, ‘What was that? I’ve never had anybody greet me like that,’ and I almost wanted to wipe my mouth just because I felt awkward and kind of embarrassed,” Taggart said.
The second incident Taggart remembers as “different,” but “similar.”
Trump invited the aspiring model to visit the Trump Tower to introduce her to Ford and Elite modeling agencies, according to Taggart, who said the meeting took place several weeks after the pageant.
Escorted by two chaperones, Taggart went to meet Trump.
“I went out there and when his receptionist called him back when he came out to greet me, he gave me another embrace and a kiss and it was a little different this time, it kind of felt like, it just felt like a little bit more to me,” Taggart said, adding, “To me it was like, ‘I hope he knows I’m here for business.’”
Taggart told Burnett that the situation made her feel awkward and that instead of staying for the multiple weeks she had planned, she ended up buying a plane ticket and flying herself home after the first week.
“I felt awkward,” Taggart said.
Taggart first accused Trump of misconduct in a New York Times article in May. She repeated her claims to NBC News earlier this week in the wake of a 2005 clip in which Trump brags about being able to grope women and get away with it.
“He had walked in, and my dad had seen him, and he just introduced himself then introduced me. And the first time, it was just like a, kind of a quick hug and kiss on the lips,” Taggart told Burnett.
Trump responded to Taggart’s allegations in a statement to NBC News: “I don’t even know who she is. She claims this took place in a public area. I never kissed her. I emphatically deny this ridiculous claim.”
Taggart’s accusation comes in the wake of multiple women accusing Trump of sexually assaulting them. Trump has vehemently denied the accusations and on Friday responded by calling himself the “victim” of a political “smear.”
Taggart told Burnett she had no political motivations in coming forward with her story, noting that she was a Republican.
“I had excused it. I’ve been through a lot worse with guys since then,” Taggart said.
When asked if she was coming forward to aid the Clinton campaign, Taggart replied: “Not one bit,” and said she was not planning on voting for either candidate.