Trump called in to Fox and Friends Tuesday morning, and mentioned Clinton’s comments as the one time the Democratic presidential nominee got under his skin.
“When she brought up the person, I know that person, that person was a Miss Universe person, and she was the worst we ever had,” Trump says. “The worst. The absolute worst. She was impossible. And she was a Miss Universe contestant, and ultimately a winner, who they had a tremendously difficult time with as Miss Universe.”
Host Ainsley Earhardt appears to try to steer Trump to another topic, but the Republican presidential nominee continued.
“She was the winner, and she gained a massive amount of weight, and it was a real problem,” Trump says. “Hillary went back into the years and she found this – this was many years ago – and found the girl, and talked about her like she was Mother Teresa, and it wasn’t quite that way, and that’s okay, Hillary has to do what she has to do.”
Machado won the Miss Universe pageant in 1996 at age 19 while Trump was a co-owner of the Miss Universe organization, but three months after earning the title rumors about her weight gain started, and Trump and pageant officials threatened to take away her crown if she didn’t lose the weight.
The Clinton campaign tweeted out an interview with Machado right as the debate ended.
“He was overwhelming, I was so scared of him,” Machado, now 39, says in Spanish. “He’d yell at me all the time. He’d tell me, ‘You look ugly,’ or ‘You look fat.’ Sometimes he’d ‘play’ with me and say: ‘Hello, Miss Piggy,’ ‘Hello, Miss Housekeeping.’ ”
Trump hired a personal trainer for Machado in 1997, and invited reporters and cameramen to film her exercising, without letting her know.
“She weighed 118 lbs. or 117 lbs., and she went up to 160 or 170. So this is somebody who likes to eat,” Trump says in footage from the training session.
“It was very humiliating. I felt really bad, like a lab rat. It had turned into a circus, the joke of ‘The Fat Miss Universe.’ A joke that caused me a lot of pain,” Machado says now. “Long after, I was sick with eating disorders. I wouldn’t eat, and would still see myself as fat, because a powerful man had said so.”
Machado, originally from Venezuela, became a U.S. citizen in August, and pledged her support for Clinton, determined to defeat Trump.
“This is a man who doesn’t realize the damage he causes,” Machado says. “He bears many grudges, and harbors a deep racism, and he is convinced that there are lesser human beings than him. But now I’m strong.”
“I am an American citizen, and I am going to vote. That’s why I dare speak about all this. I think Donald Trump definitely lacks the ability, experience, preparation, and human qualities, to be president of the United States.”