WASHINGTON — President Trump’s Twitter attack on Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, which she called a “sexist smear,” is fueling Democratic calls for congressional hearings on the president’s own alleged past sexual misconduct, with some even joining the call for him to resign.

Democrats in the House and Senate said the tweet underscores the need for the president to be held to account at a time when harassment accusations are felling  powerful men from Hollywood to Washington.

“He does a favor by drawing attention to this issue so I think it’s a boomerang back on the president,” said Sen. Jeff Merkley, D-Ore. “It was intended to certainly harass her,” he said of the tweet, calling for hearings to enable every woman who has a story about Trump to “get a clear, full chance to share that with the American people.”

Gillibrand is among six Democratic senators who’ve called for Trump’s resignation after a week in which sexual harassment allegations forced the resignations of three lawmakers in both parties. The accusations are similar to those leveled against Trump by at least a dozen women during his 2016 campaign.

The New York lawmaker is theonly senator Trump chose to attack on Twitter.

Gillibrand used to come “begging” for campaign contributions and “would do anything for them,” Trump said.

Lightweight Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, a total flunky for Chuck Schumer and someone who would come to my office “begging” for campaign contributions not so long ago (and would do anything for them), is now in the ring fighting against Trump. Very disloyal to Bill & Crooked-USED!

In a Tuesday morning news conference, Gillibrand said the tweet “is a sexist smear” and “part of the president’s effort at name calling… It is intended to silence me.”

The president’s broadside against Gillibrand is among a number of factors putting a spotlight on Trump’s alleged sexual groping and harassment of women that was a major campaign controversy. On Tuesday night, voters in Alabama will also decide whether to send to the U.S. Senate Roy Moore, the GOP nominee accused by several women of sexually touching or harassing teenage girls decades ago.

Several women on Monday revived their allegations that Trump, a former New York businessman, sexually harassed or assaulted them and called for a congressional investigation.

Within moments of Trump’s tweet, a number of her female Senate colleagues took to Twitter to lambaste the president. Trump is a “misogynist, compulsive liar, and admitted sexual predator,” said Sen. Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii.

Hirono also called for Trump to resign, along with Merkley, Ron Wyden of Oregon, Cory Booker of New Jersey, and Bernie Sanders of Vermont, an independent who caucuses with Democrats.

.@realDonaldTrump is a misogynist, compulsive liar, and admitted sexual predator. Attacks on Kirsten are the latest example that no one is safe from this bully. He must resign. https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/940567812053053441 

Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., also fired back: “Are you really trying to bully, intimidate and slut-shame @SenGillibrand? Do you know who you’re picking a fight with? Good luck with that,” Warren said in an earlier tweet.

In the House, the Democratic Women’s Working Group holds a news conference calling on the House Oversight Committee to investigate sexual misconduct allegations.

Trump did not explain what he meant by “do anything” for campaign contributions, or how Gillibrand might have been “USED” by Bill and Hillary Clinton. (Last month, Gillibrand startled fellow Democrats by saying President Bill Clinton should have resigned in 1998 amid the Monica Lewinsky imbroglio.)

Most Republicans on Capitol Hill declined to comment on the president’s tweet. Asked about the Democratic uproar, Sen. John Kennedy, R-La., quipped: “it’s all political.”

Gillibrand is considered a potential contender for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination who recently made headlines by criticizing former President Bill Clinton over his affair with a White House intern. She’s made the issue of addressing sexual assault, including in the military, a cornerstone of her Senate career.

More: After Trump Twitter attack, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand says: ‘You cannot silence me’

More: Fox News host slams Roy Moore: ‘I hope the guy loses’

Gillibrand has also called for congressional hearings into the issue — especially since the backlash against sexual harassment sweeping the country has resulted in the resignations of other politicians, including Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn., and Rep. Trent Franks, R-Ariz.

Contributing: David Jackson

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2017/12/12/trump-sexist-tweet-sen-gillibrand-sparks-mini-rebellion-among-women-senators/944337001/