On Monday, a sixth woman came forward to accuse former President H.W. Bush of groping her when she was just 16 years old.
Speaking with TIME, Rosalyn Corrigan said that in 2003, the former president pinched her butt during a photo session. Corrigan's mother corroborated her daughter's allegations and had told seven other people about the incident.
The alleged groping took place when H.W. Bush was 79 and walking upright, roughly nine years before being confined to a wheelchair. In the past few weeks, five other women accused George H.W. Bush of groping them; his spokesman Jim McGrath attributed the incidents as unfortunate byproducts of Parkinson's and dementia. Obviously, the account given by Corrigan negates that excuse.
In the same TIME interview, Corrigan mentioned listening to Ben Shapiro's podcast “Is Everything Sexual Assault Now?” where the allegations against H.W. Bush were discussed. For reasons unknown, Corrigan characterized Shapiro as defending the former president's actions.
“When I heard that was the reason, like, ‘Oh, he’s just an old man and he doesn’t know any better and he’s just being harmless and playful and it’s just where his arm falls . . . I just burst into uncontrollable sobbing,” Corrigan said. “I just couldn’t sit with that. I can’t. I cannot sit with that. I can’t sleep anymore, because that’s not true, and it’s not an excuse.”
It's understandable that Corrigan would be upset, but TIME completely failed to mention that nowhere in his podcast did Shapiro ever excuse H.W. Bush's actions if they were a product of his free will.
"There are two types of old people who act inappropriately: some who are actually suffering from dementia and some are like 'screw it, F it to life, I'm old [and] I can do what I want. If this is the latter, then I'm not going to make excuses for this behavior," Shapiro said.
"Here's the reality, if my wife had been groped on the behind while some old guy shouted 'David cop-a-feel' I would not be a happy camper," he continued. "This idea that it's okay because Bush is old, or because he was a war hero, I don't buy that."
The TIME article did not note what Shapiro actually stated in the podcast. He only gave the former president leeway if, and only if, his Parkinson's and dementia made him not responsible for his actions. Watch the actual podcast, his statements at the 3:30 mark.
Shapiro has since taken TIME to task on Twitter for misrepresenting what he said: