Ohio governor and one-time Republican presidential hopeful John Kasich said in a Saturday statement that he wasn’t at all surprised by the shocking leaked 2005 recording of Donald Trump boasting about being able to “grab” women “by the p—y” because “when you’re a star they let you do it.”
The recording of Trump, which was picked up by a hot mic and published by The Washington Post on Friday, came from an interaction between Trump and television personality Billy Bush. In addition to his comments about grabbing women “by the p—y,” Trump made a litany of other disturbing sexually charged comments.
“Nothing that has happened in the last 48 hours is surprising to me or many others,” said Kasich, who has refused to support Trump but had left the door open to the Manhattan billionaire eventually winning him over. “Many people were angry and questioned why I would not endorse Donald Trump or attend the Republican Convention. I’ve long had concerns with Donald Trump that go beyond his temperament.”
He mentioned that the pair have “substantive” policy difference on trade, Russia, and the budget, adding that Trump has not changed his “disqualifying” policy stances.
“I’ve also encouraged him to change his behaviour for the better and offer a positive, inclusive vision for our country, but he has not,” the Ohio Republican said. “It’s clear that he hasn’t changed and has no interest in doing so. As a result, Donald Trump is a man I cannot and should not support.”
Calling the shocking tape and Trump’s response “disgusting,” he added that it’s “not why I reached this decision.”
“It has been an accumulation of his words and actions that many have been warning about,” he said. “I will not vote for a nominee who has behaved in a manner that reflects so poorly on our country. Our country deserves better.”
Trump addressed the matter in a Friday statement, in which he called the comments “locker room banter” and added that former President Bill Clinton has said “far worse to me on the golf course.”
That was later followed by a late-night video address, offering a brief apology and saying he looked forward to the Sunday night presidential debate. He posted a tweet Saturday morning to call the past day “certainly … interesting.”
Almost immediately, Trump came under fire from those on both sides of the aisle — as many top Republicans either strongly condemned the comments or unendorsed the Manhattan billionaire altogether.
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