Melania Trump condemns her husband’s 2005 comments about groping women ― but she still wants people to forgive him, as she has, and vote for him in November.
In a press release the Trump campaign published on Saturday afternoon, Trump made her first public statements about the now-infamous remarks her husband, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, made while talking to a television host 11 years ago. Apparently unaware that a microphone was recording his statements, the real estate mogul described how he liked to “grab [women] by the pussy” and said he could get away with it because “when you’re a star, they let you do it.”
These comments, which The Washington Post published on Friday afternoon, have provoked a sharp backlash, with even high-ranking Republicans denouncing the rhetoric and some pulling their endorsements of his candidacy.
Melania Trump, who was apparently pregnant when her husband made the comments, is echoing the condemnations ― but not the calls to abandon the nominee’s bid for the White House.
“The words my husband used are unacceptable and offensive to me,” she said in her statement. “This does not represent the man I know. He has the heart and mind of a leader. I hope that people will accept his apology, as I have, and focus on the important issues facing the nation and the world.”
Donald Trump actually has a long history of making crude, denigrating comments about women. He has also faced multiple allegations of lewd behavior, even sexual assault, although he has strongly denied assaulting anybody and suggested other accounts of his statements and behavior are inaccurate.
The new recordings elicited a rare (and possibly unprecedented) public apology from the GOP nominee. He said in a videotaped statement, which his campaign released Friday night, that he was sorry for making the comments. However, he added that the controversy is a “distraction” and that Bill and Hillary Clinton had done worse.
He has since indicated, in a series of interviews, that he has no intention of withdrawing from the race ― and that he is getting “tremendous support.”
Editor’s note: Donald Trump regularly incites political violence and is a serial liar, rampant xenophobe, racist, misogynist and birther who has repeatedly pledged to ban all Muslims — 1.6 billion members of an entire religion — from entering the U.S.