Contributed from Associated Press: Steve Peoples and Jonathan Lemire

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Donald Trump heatedly rejected new allegations of sexual assault as “pure fiction” on Thursday, hammering his female accusers as “horrible, horrible liars” as the already-nasty 2016 presidential campaign sank further into charges and countercharges of attacks on women.

Among the female accusers is former Miss Washington Cassandre Searles, who recently told Rolling Stone Magazine that Trump “grabbed her buttocks and invited her to his hotel room.”

In a Facebook post from earlier this year, Searles called Trump a “misogynist” who “treated us like cattle” and “lined up so he could get a closer look at his property.”

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In more recent news, two women documented their encounters with Trump to the New York Times late Wednesday, stating that the Republican presidential candidate groped or kissed them.

Separately, a People Magazine reporter offered a first-person account accusing Trump of attacking her while she was in Florida to interview him and his pregnant wife.

Campaign foe Hillary Clinton was mostly silent on the issue. But Trump faced a passionate rebuke from first lady Michelle Obama, who warned that his behavior “is not something we can ignore.”

With Election Day less than four weeks away, Republican Trump was again forced to defend himself against allegations of sexual misconduct, five days after a video surfaced in which he bragged about kissing and groping women without their permission.

Ever defiant, the New York billionaire denied the allegations and blamed them on Hillary Clinton’s campaign and the complicit news media as he campaigned in Florida. He promised to sue his media critics and said he was preparing evidence that would discredit his female accusers, whom he called “horrible people. They’re horrible, horrible liars.”

Associated Press contributed to this report. Peoples reported from Washington. AP writer Michael Casey in Manchester, New Hampshire, contributed to this report.


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