A controversial hot mic recording of a vulgar 2005 conversation involving now Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump was released on Friday, leading to a rare apology from the candidate.
Trump campaign spokesperson Katrina Pierson spoke about Trump’s comments with Fox News host Megyn Kelly following Sunday night’s debate.
Kelly asked Pierson what she thought of Trump’s statement. Pierson replied:
I have two brothers, I was in sports, so I was around a lot of athletes. This truly was two men who had what they thought was a private conversation talking about an attractive woman. [Trump] calls it locker room banter…
Kelly stopped Pierson to ask her is her brothers spoke about “grabbing women by the genitals.” The controversial portion of Trump’s comments was his statement that “And when you’re a star they let you do it. You can do anything. Grab them by the pussy. You can do anything.” Even campaign surrogate and former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani said that Trump was describing sexual assault in the video.
Pierson said that she was unaware of the content of her brothers’ conversations. “You know your brothers,” Kelly said. “Do you believe they talk about grabbing women by the genitals and laughing about it and doing whatever they want to them?”
Pierson did not answer, instead saying that Trump’s comments were reflective of “the entertainment culture.” Pierson also argued that Trump made the statement 11 years ago, to which Kelly reminded her that Trump was “59 years old then, it’s not like he was 20.”
Another series of audio clips, focusing on various interviews between Trump and radio shock jock Howard Stern, have also been released. The candidate spoke vividly on his sexual activities, including infidelity, as well as his fascination with his daughter Ivanka.
Several Republican politicians retracted their endorsements, called for Trump to drop out, or refused to defend his comments (including his own vice presidential pick) after they resurfaced. The Hill compiled a thorough list of the Republicans who have pulled their support or asked Trump to step aside.