Trump’s speechwriter resigns over abuse allegations

Washington: US President Donald Trump’s speechwriter David Sorensen has become the second White House aide this week to resign amid allegations of domestic abuse.

Sorensen resigned on Friday after his former wife claimed that he was violent and emotionally abusive during their marriage. He, however, vehemently denied the allegations and said “she was the one who victimized him”, the Washington Post reported.

The departure of Sorensen, who worked under senior policy adviser Stephen Miller, came two days after Trump’s staff secretary Rob Porter quit over allegations of abuse from two former wives.

Sorensen’s former wife Jessica Corbett told the daily that he was physically abusive to her while they were married. She said that on separate occasions her former husband ran a car over her foot, threw her against a wall and extinguished a cigarette on her hand.

In response, Sorensen said he was considering legal action, but said he quit because he “didn’t want the White House to have to deal with this distraction”.

White House officials said they learned of the accusations by Sorensen’s wife late on Thursday. “We immediately confronted the staffer, he denied the allegations and he resigned today,” Deputy Press Secretary Raj Shah said.

Sorensen’s resignation came as the White House, particularly Chief of Staff John Kelly, struggled to contain the turmoil surrounding Porter. It is alleged that the former White House staff secretary gave one former wife a blackeye while another filed a restraining order.

Porter has denied the accusations against him, as well.

Trump paid tribute to him, saying: “We found out about it recently and I was surprised by it, but we certainly wish him well and it’s a tough time for him.”

His comments sparked criticism from Democrats, with former Vice-President Joe Biden saying Trump had downplayed the allegations against Porter.

“That’s like saying: ‘That axe murderer out there, he’s a great painter'”, Biden said.