NEW YORK, Sept. 30 (UPI) — Former Miss Universe Alicia Machado fired back at Donald Trump saying he was “once again launching attacks” to discredit her after he went on an early-morning Twitter rant during which he said Machado had made a sex tape.
Machado was interjected into the campaign by Hillary Clinton, who invoked her story during Monday’s debate. Clinton shamed Trump for demeaning Machado publicly when she gained weight after winning Trump’s Miss Universe beauty pageant in 1996.
Machado, who was born in Venezuela but recently became a. U.S. citizen, came forward earlier this week, charging Trump called her “Miss Piggy” — a reference to her weight — and “Miss Housekeeping” — a reference to her Latina heritage — during the year she worked for Trump as Miss Universe. Machado said the remarks about her weight caused her to slip back into bulimia, which took her years to overcome.
Trump sent two tweets around 5 a.m. Friday, renewing his feud with Machado. Trump did not defend against Clinton’s allegations during the debate, but did repeat his criticism of Machado’s weight in an interview with Fox News the following morning.
In his Twitter salvos Friday, Trump implied Machado had made a sex tape, though no proof of its existence has surfaced.
“Did Crooked Hillary help disgusting (check out sex tape and past) Alicia M become a US citizen so she could use her in the debate?” Trump tweeted.
Machado and Clinton both responded. Clinton called Trump “unhinged.” Machado released a long statement on Instagram, accompanied by a photo of her draped in an American flag.
“The Republican candidate and his campaign are, once again launching attacks, insults and are attempting to revive slanders and false accusations about my life, in order to humiliate, intimidate, and unbalance me. These attacks are cheap lies with bad intentions,” she wrote.