A former Republican candidate for Maine’s state Senate accused former President George H.W. Bush of groping her on Friday, becoming the fourth woman to come forward to accuse the former president of sexual harassment.
Amanda Staples visited the former president at his family compound in Kennebunkport, Maine, during her campaign in 2006.
Staples said Bush grabbed her from behind during a photo op, and said, “Oh I’m not THAT President.”
The episode is similar to stories shared by three other women accusing the former president of sexual harassment.
Actress Heather Lind was the first to come forward, accusing Bush of touching her inappropriately from behind during a photo op.
New York actress Jordana Grolnick then shared her experience, followed by author Christina Baker Kline. Both women also said Bush touched them from behind during a photo.
Staples said she “couldn’t help but share” her experience in wake of the three other women coming forward, according to The New York Post.
Bush’s office released a statement in light of the allegations on Wednesday apologizing for the former president’s actions.
“At age 93, President Bush has been confined to a wheelchair for roughly five years, so his arm falls on the lower waist of people with whom he takes pictures,” the statement read.
“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. Some have seen it as innocent; others clearly view it as inappropriate,” the statement from Bush spokesman Jim McGrath continued.
“To anyone he has offended, President Bush apologizes most sincerely,” he said. (The Hill)