Yashwant Raj,Washington: Donald Trump was caught bragging about groping and seducing women in a 2005
conversation caught on microphone whose release on Friday caused such a firestorm many fellow Republicans felt compelled to condemn him publicly, and forcefully.
The recording, which is actually on video with the most objectionable portions being off camera, was done on way to a studio by Access Hollywood. The conversation took place between Trump and Billy Bush, a reporter for the show and nephew of George W Bush and Jeb Bush.
The recording, which was first released by The Washington Post, starts with Trump talking about a failed attempt to seduce a woman, who is not named. “I moved on her, and I failed. But I’ll admit it,” he can be heard saying, clearly.
“I did try and f*** her. She was married,” Trump said, and went on: “And I moved on her very heavily. In fact, I took her out furniture shopping. She wanted to get some furniture. I said, ‘Ill show you where they have some nice furniture’.”
“I moved on her like a bitch, but I couldn’t get there. And she was married,” Trump said. “Then all of a sudden I see her, she’s now got the big phony t… and everything. She’s totally changed her look.”
It’s time for them disembark from their bus carrying them to the studio. They saw an actress from the show they were to shoot, and continue the conversation.
“Your girl’s hot as s***, in the purple,” says Bush.
“Whoa!” Trump exclaimed, “Whoa!”
“I’ve got to use some Tic Tacs, just in case I start kissing her,” Trump, who was then 56, said. “You know I’m automatically attracted to beautiful — I just start kissing them. It’s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don’t even wait.”
“And when you’re a star, they let you do it,” Trump said. “You can do anything.”
“Whatever you want,” said another man.
“Grab them by the p—y,” Trump said. “You can do anything.”
Trump issued a statement calling it “locker-room banter”, and said Bill Clinton, the former president Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton’s husband, had said worse things. He also said, “I apologize if anyone was offended.”
But backlash was swift and brutal.
“This is horrific. We cannot allow this man to become president,” said Hillary Clinton in a tweet.
Trump’s running mate, Mike Pence, was “beside himself” and his wife was furious, AP reported citing a person familiar with their thinking.
And Speaker Paul Ryan, the senior-most elected Republican in the country, was “sickened” by the remarks and announced Trump won’t be doing a joint appearance with him scheduled for Saturday, essentially disinviting him.
Mitt Romney, the Republican presidential nominee in 2012, said in a tweet: “Hitting on married women? Condoning assault? Such vile degradations demean our wives and daughters and corrupt America’s face to the world.”
Commentators and pundits on both the right and left spoke of a “breaking point” in the campaign, coming as it did just two days before the second presidential debate and just a month before election on November 8.
There were calls for him from Republicans to leave the race, or for the party to dump him. “Think this could be the point of no return for the GOP. Dump Trump. Or at least disassociate from him in a dramatic way,” said Bill Kristol, editor of the conservative news publication The Weekly Standard. He even had a suggestion as replacement for Trump: Romney.