Hillary Clinton brought up the former Miss Universe Alicia Machado at Monday’s first presidential debate to highlight Donald Trump’s problems with women, but who exactly is she?
Late in the debate, Clinton brought up Machado to illustrate her point that Trump doesn’t have the best record when it comes to dealing with women.
“One of the worst things he said was about a woman in a beauty contest -- he loves beauty contests, supporting them and hanging around them -- and he called this woman ‘Miss Piggy,’ then he called her ‘Miss Housekeeping’ because she was Latina,” Clinton said. “Donald, she has a name. Her name is Alicia Machado. And she has become a U.S. citizen and you can bet she is going to vote this November.”
In 1996, Trump was executive producer of the Miss Universe Pageant and Machado was a 19-year-old first-year law student who had been named Miss Venezuela. She went on to win the title at the pageant, but over the course of the next year put on weight.
“Some people, when they have pressure, eat too much. Like me. Like Alicia,” Trump said at the time. “We had a choice of termination or” pressuring her to lose weight.
In May, Machado made the claims to Inside Edition about Trump calling her “Miss Housekeeping” and “Miss Piggy,” which she said had a negative effect on her mental health.
“After that episode, I was sick, had anorexia and bulimia for five years,” she said. “Over the past 20 years, I’ve gone to a lot of psychologists to combat this.”
Tuesday morning, Trump confirmed to Fox News that Machado had “gained a massive amount of weight and it was a real problem.”
During Monday’s debate, Machado wasn’t only name-checked -- she was also watching from home. Following Clinton’s mention of her, Machado posted a photo of herself holding her new U.S. passport, declaring, “I received my passport! I’m ready to vote For my country for you @HillaryClinton for my daughter For women workers.”