×

Donald Trump Apologizes for Lewd Remarks: ‘I Pledge to Be a Better Man’

Donald Trump released a video on Friday saying that he has “said and done things I regret” and apologized for lewd comments he made about women in a 2005 conversation with then-“Access Hollywood” host Billy Bush.

The “Access Hollywood” video was leaked to the Washington Post, which published its contents on Friday. Trump’s comments drew condemnation from GOP leaders, including House Speaker Paul Ryan and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.

In his video, released by the campaign just after midnight on Saturday, Trump said that “anyone who knows me knows that these words don’t reflect who I am.” “I pledge to be a better man tomorrow, and will never, ever let you down,” he adds.

In his 90-second video, Trump said that he has “never said I’m a perfect person, nor pretended to be someone that I’m not. I’ve said some things that I regret and the words released today on this more-than-a-decade-old video are one of them.” He added that he was “wrong and I apologize.”

But he said that the controversy over his 2005 remarks was a “distraction.”

He then turned to attacking Hillary and Bill Clinton.

“I’ve said some foolish things, but there’s a big difference between the words and actions of other people,” he said. “Bill Clinton has actually abused women and Hillary has bullied, attacked, shamed, and intimidated his victims. We will discuss this more in the coming days. See you at the debate on Sunday.”

Trump’s campaign posted his apology on Facebook and on Twitter.

What’s unclear is if the video will satisfy the calls by Ryan, McConnell and others for contrition. Some Republicans are calling on the party to abandon Trump. Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) issued an angry message in response, calling Trump himself a “distraction” and asking him to step aside. Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) withdrew his endorsement.

But even if Trump were to step aside — and his statement didn’t give any indication that he was even entertaining the thought — the deadline has passed in a number of states to get his name off the ballot.

The story about the “Access Hollywood” video was published mid-afternoon by the Post. According to the Post, reporter David Fahrenthold got a tip on Friday morning about the “Access Hollywood” footage, and a source sent it to him. He raced to post it online, as “Access” and NBC News, which also were preparing stories.

On CNN, Ana Navarro, a GOP consultant who has been critical of Trump, lashed out at a Trump surrogate who objected to her using the word “pussy,” a word Trump had used in the leaked video. “Don’t tell me you’re offended when I say pussy and you’re not offended when Donald Trump says it!” Navarro said angrily. “I’m not running for president. He is.”

The Post said that the story was the most concurrently viewed story in the history of its website, with 100,000 people reading it at the same time at one point on Friday.

The “Nancy” who Trump was referring to in the 2005 clip was Nancy O’Dell, then the co-host of “Access Hollywood.” along with Billy Bush. Bush exchanges comments with Trump in the video.  TMZ reported in 2007 that Trump tried to drop O’Dell as a co-host of the Miss USA pageant that year because she was pregnant, but he was overruled by NBC. A source also confirmed that account to Variety on Friday. Trump at the time owned the Miss Universe Organization.

More Biz

  • Adele Haenel Adèle Haenel

    Accusations Against Roman Polanski, Other Filmmakers Propel #MeToo in France

    When the Harvey Weinstein scandal broke two years ago, the news was mostly met in France with a Gallic shrug. Screen icon Catherine Deneuve even denounced the #MeToo movement as creating a “totalitarian” environment. But bombshell accusations this month from actors Adèle Haenel and Valentine Monnier may finally have turned the tide in the local film [...]

  • Subhash Chandra Chairman of the Zee

    Another 16% Slice of India’s Zee to be Sold by Essel

    The Essel Group is to sell a further 16.5% stake in Zee Entertainment Enterprise Limited, India’s largest private sector broadcast group. The debt-reduction move comes just months after Essel auctioned off an 11% tranche of ZEEL. “The Group seeks to sell up to 16.5% stake in ZEEL to financial investors, in order to repay loan [...]

  • Frank Cicha

    Listen: Why Fox Television Stations Embraced Trial and Error in Daytime

    Frank Cicha, head of programming for Fox Television Stations, saw the future coming nearly a decade ago when Fox’s TV station group committed many millions to land syndication rights to “The Big Bang Theory” back in 2010. Even then, it was clear that big hits on the scale of “Big Bang” were going to be [...]

  • Jussie Smollett

    Jussie Smollett Files Malicious Prosecution Counterclaim Against City of Chicago

    Jussie Smollett has filed a counterclaim against the city of Chicago, several Chicago Police Department officers, and brothers Abimbola Osundairo and Olabinjo Osundairo claiming that he was the victim of a malicious prosecution that caused him “humiliation, mental anguish and extreme emotional distress.” The filing document, obtained by Variety, alleges that the Chicago P.D. “obtained false and [...]

  • Anna-Kendrick-Frito-Lay-ad

    Christmas Crunch: Frito-Lay Bets on Anna Kendrick to Catch Holiday Snackers

    Anna Kendrick’s newest role puts her through what may be some of the most delicious torture of her career. Kendrick, known for films like “Up In The Air” and “Pitch Perfect,” recently found herself on the set of a three-day shoot surrounded by bowls, bowls and bowls of chips, popcorn and other salty snacks that [...]

  • CJ-CGV Cinemas

    CJ CGV Sells $286 Million Stake in Asian Cinema Businesses

    CJ CGV, the Korean movie theaters giant, is to raise $286 million from the sale of a slice of its Indonesian, Vietnamese and Chinese businesses. The company, which has its own stock market listing and is affiliated to the CJ Group, which includes CJ E&M and CJ Entertainment, said this week that it had sold [...]

  • Alibaba offices

    Hong Kong Share Sale Brings Alibaba an Easy $13 Billion

    Chinese e-commerce and entertainment giant Alibaba was easily able to sell all the shares it put up for sale in a secondary listing on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. The company is selling 500 million new shares, which on Wednesday it announced would be priced at HK$176 apiece, or roughly US$180 per New York-traded ADR, [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content