NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
Thursday, January 28, 2016, 5:09 PM
Donald Trump’s mudslinging on Megyn Kelly took a nasty turn Thursday ahead of the Fox News debate he has refused to attend.
Trump retweeted a doctored image of Kelly and an Internet meme calling the debate moderator a “bimbo” for pictures she posed for alongside a 2010 GQ magazine article. The Republican presidential frontrunner has continued trolling her days before Monday’s Iowa caucuses.
“And this is the bimbo that’s asking presidential questions?” the tweet by one of Trump’s supporters said. The meme showed a racy photo of Kelly in a black dress with a caption saying, “Criticizes Trump for objectifying women…Poses like this in GQ Magazine.”
An August file photo shows Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaking after the first Republican debate in Cleveland that month.
Trump backed out of Thursday night’s debate over the network’s refusal to remove Kelly as moderator after he feuded with her in an August debate. He later said that she “had blood coming out of her whatever” when she questioned him about past remarks he has made about women.
Trump called her a “bimbo” in another Twitter rant later that month. Yet he had said Wednesday that he would “only call her a lightweight reporter!”
He tweeted, “I refuse to call Megyn Kelly a bimbo, because that would not be politically correct.”
Apparently, he’s leaving it to his supporters — and sharing the sentiments with his 5.8 million Twitter followers. Many of the over 80,000 tweets directed at Kelly between Tuesday and Wednesday morning and analyzed by Vocativ also used sexist slurs.
The word “bimbo” came in second at 404 uses, compared to 423 times she was called a “b—-” and the 128 times people noted her hair is blonde. The tech news site illustrated the vile words in a word cloud entitled “24 hours of wrath from Donald Trump supporters.”
Fox News Channel debate moderators (L-R), Chris Wallace, Megyn Kelly and Brett Baier, are shown at the August event. Trump feuded publicly with Kelly after she asked him a question about his past remarks about women.
The GQ photos, which ran in a Q-and-A entitled “Megyn Kelly on Working for Fox News and Leaving Her Law Career,” appear to be the article’s real photos. Yet the other image Trump posted Thursday morning is a long-debunked fake that was altered to make it look as if Kelly was posing with Saudi Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal and a female relative wearing religious Muslim garb.
“Most people don’t know that the co-owner of Fox News is Prince Al-Waleed of Saudi Arabia here with his sister and with host Mygan Kelly,” the image said, misspelling Kelly’s first name. “In case you only watch Fox News and you missed it everywhere else. GOOGLE IT.”
Megyn Kelly, the host of “The Kelly Files,” poses in a Fox News studio. The network has refused Trump’s request to remove her from the debate.
Snopes dismissed the photo in a mythbuster report from August as a photoshopped image. The Internet myth research service rated the meme as “mostly false,” noting the Saudi billionaire controls 6.6% of the news channel’s parent company, 21st Century Fox.
Fox News hasn’t yet responded to Trump’s latest insults. Kelly, the host of “The Kelly Files,” mocked the candidate’s decision to skip the debate on her show Tuesday night, saying “not everyone is showing up” but “we hope you will.”
The network jabbed at Trump’s stance then slammed his campaign’s actions in consecutive statements released earlier this week.
“Capitulating to politicians’ ultimatums about a debate moderator violates all journalistic standards, as do threats, including the one leveled by Trump’s campaign manager Corey Lewandowski toward Megyn Kelly,” a spokeswoman for Fox News said. “In a call on Saturday with a Fox News executive, Lewandowski stated that Megyn had a ‘rough couple of days after that last debate’ and he ‘would hate to have her go through that again.’”
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