Another woman has publicly accused George H.W. Bush of groping her, the sixth woman to do so in the past few weeks.
Roslyn Corrigan told Time she was 16 when Bush, then 79, groped her buttocks during a photo at a 2003 event at The Woodlands, Texas, office of the CIA. Time cited several sources who said Corrigan and her family had told them about the groping years ago.
According to Time:
“As soon as the picture was being snapped on the one-two-three he dropped his hands from my waist down to my buttocks and gave it a nice, ripe squeeze, which would account for the fact that in the photograph my mouth is hanging wide open,” Corrigan said. “I was like, ‘Oh my goodness, what just happened?’ ”
Corrigan had left class early at her high school to join her parents at an event for CIA personnel and their family to meet Bush. Corrigan had “grown up dreaming about going into politics,” Time reported.
Corrigan had taken the photo alongside her mother, Sari Young, whom she said she told immediately about the incident. Young said she was “really, really upset” and that her daughter was “really, really mad” but that she didn’t feel she could speak up. “And you’ve got your husband’s job that could be in jeopardy,” she said. “What are you supposed to do?”
A spokesman for Bush told Time the former president “does not have it in his heart to knowingly cause anyone harm or distress, and he again apologizes to anyone he may have offended during a photo op.”
The elder Bush was first accused of groping by actress Heather Lind in a since-deleted Instagram post on Oct. 24. In the post, Lind said Bush had touched her “from behind” and told a “dirty joke” in a 2014 photo op. The next day, actress Jordana Grolnick said in an interview with Deadspin that Bush had done something similar to her in August 2016: “As we smiled for the photo he asked the group, ‘Do you want to know who my favorite magician is?’ As I felt his hand dig into my flesh, he said, ‘David Cop-a-Feel!’ ”
Author Christina Baker Kline wrote in Slate on Oct. 26 that she experienced a similar groping and the “David Cop-a-Feel” joke at a 2014 event and that a driver for the Bush family asked her to be “discreet.”
Afterward, Amanda Staples, a former Republican state Senate candidate wrote in an Instagram post that Bush had groped her in 2006, according to the Portland Press Herald, and a retired Pennsylvania journalist made a similar claim about a 2004 event in a Facebook post, according to the Erie Times-News.
At the time of the earlier accusations, the statement from a Bush spokesperson said that Bush’s arm, because of his wheelchair, “falls on the lower waist of people with whom he takes pictures.” The statement said Bush apologized “to anyone he has offended” and that “to try to put people at ease, the president routinely tells the same joke—and on occasion, he has patted women’s rears in what he intended to be a good-natured manner.” In 2003, when Corrigan said she was groped, and in other accusations from years ago, Bush was not yet in a wheelchair.