Donald Trump campaign could be crushed by 'Miss Piggy' Alicia Machado

Alicia Machado seen winning the Miss Universe 1996 title (Getty)

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Donald Trump has made no secret of the fact that he loves the adulation of young, beautiful women. Far from being sheepish about it, he believes comments such as "a hot piece of ass" actually help him on the campaign trail, distracting from the negative press that has often surrounded him.

Yet this week Trump´s relationship with women has become a rather unwelcome distraction for the Republican candidate and his campaign team.

Hillary Clinton smashed Trump to pieces over his alleged sexism in Monday's debate, saying "this is a man who has called women pigs, slobs, and dogs". 

One particular name brought to the fore by Clinton really struck home, and threatens to deail Trump's entire election campaign.

Back in 1996, a young Venezuelan woman by the name of Alicia Machado won the title of Miss Universe. To the wider world she was beautiful, but Trump, who owned the competition at the time, seemed to take exception to her, allegedly calling Ms. Machado “Miss Piggy” and “Miss Housekeeping.”

He publicly lambasted her for gaining weight, bringing dozens of reporters and cameramen to watch as she exercised.

Trump, in his trademark suit and tie, posed for photographs beside her as she burned calories in front of the media. He told them that she was "somebody who likes to eat,”. She was only a teenager at the time. 

                   Machado seen working out at Trump´s request (Getty)

By her own account, this led to a long period of eating disorders - anorexia and bulimia. Yet, 20 years on, Trump still hasn't apologised, telling Fox News on Tuesday that she'd "gained a massive amount of weight, and it was a real problem.”

Now, she's released a video on Facebook detailing what Trump said and did, calling for people to support Hillary Clinton. More former contestants have also come forward with their stories of how the businessman treated them. 

With the stories like Ms Machado's gathering momentum, it looks like this could be the one accusation that Donald Trump might find difficult to shake off.