The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Trump: I ‘broke the glass ceiling on behalf of women’ in construction industry

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally in Redding, Calif., on June 3, 2016. (Reuters/Stephen Lam)

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump on Monday claimed he was one of the people who “broke the glass ceiling" for women in the construction industry, defending his record on women’s issues amid scrutiny over gender-based pay gaps on his campaign staff.

The statement came on the same night that former secretary of state Hillary Clinton clinched the Democratic party’s nomination, making her the first woman at the top of a major party ticket. Trump's critics immediately mocked his comments — and the timing — on social media.

“Number one, I have great respect for women. I was the one that really broke the glass ceiling on behalf of women, more than anybody in the construction industry,” Trump told Bill O’Reilly on Fox News Monday. “My relationship I think is going to end up being very good with women.”

Clinton was widely expected to surpass the requisite delegate threshold to win the Democratic nomination by Tuesday night. She crossed the finish line slightly earlier than expected, amassing enough delegates by Monday night to become the presumptive Democratic nominee.

Trump has long claimed that he helped pave the way for women in the construction industry. News that Clinton had seized the Democratic nomination had not yet broken when Trump made his remarks, which were pre-recorded and aired Monday evening.

“She’s not honest, I don’t even think she’s capable. Every decision she’s made practically, she’s made so many bad decisions,” Trump said of Clinton. “She would be a disaster as president of our country.”