On Tuesday, in a since-deleted Instagram post, actress Heather Lind accused former-president George H.W. Bush of “sexual assault” for touching her during a photo-op. Through a spokesman, Bush quickly apologized. Wednesday evening a second actress accused the 93 year-old of similar behavior. A Bush spokesman again apologized and this time admitted that “on occasion, he has patted women’s rears[.]”
Bush’s second accuser is New York actress Jordana Grolnick. “We all circled around him and Barbara for a photo, and I was right next to him,” she told Deadspin. “He reached his right hand around to my behind, and 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!’”
Lind also said that Bush told a “dirty joke.”
Grolnick adds that “out of discomfort” some laughed at the joke and that Barbara Bush said, “He’s going to get himself put into jail!”
The actress says she was warned in advance about Bush’s “reputation for fondling” during photo-ops. The incident took place in August of 2016 during the intermission of a play Bush attended near his home in Kennebunkport, Maine.
Grolnick says she laughed the matter off. “I just thought, ‘Whatever. He’s a dirty old man,’” she told Deadspin.
After being contacted about this second accusation, Bush spokesman Jim McGrath released the following statement in which he admits the former-president “has patted women’s rears.”:
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. 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. To anyone he has offended, President Bush apologizes most sincerely.
Grolnick says she came forward due to “recent trends in truth-telling in entertainment and media, and empathy for Lind[.]”