Donald Trump continued to call his obscene remarks about women captured in a leaked 2005 audio recording “locker room talk” on Fox News Tuesday night, but insists they won’t hurt his chances among female voters.
It was the first national television interview Trump gave since the tape surfaced on Friday and since he debated Democratic challenger Hillary Clinton on Saturday night.
In the 11-year-old audio, Trump told Billy Bush aboard an “Access Hollywood” bus how he unsuccessfully tried to “f—” a married woman, how he wanted to kiss an actress he was about to appear with on a soap opera, and how you can “grab them by the p—y” when you’re a star.
On Fox News Tuesday, Bill O’Reilly asked the Republican presidential candidate if he thought the tape hurt his chance of winning over female voters.
“I’ve had a lot of women come up to me and say, ‘Boy, I’ve heard that and I’ve heard a lot worse than that over my life,'” Trump said. “If that’s what it’s going to take to lose an election, that will be pretty sad, then I have to go back to my other life. But I’ll tell you what, I think we’re going to win the election, Bill.”
Most national polls taken over the weekend give Clinton a greater than 80% chance of winning the presidency, and renowned statistician Nate Silver projects her lead among women is now a whopping 33 points.
O’Reilly also asked whether Trump had a specific plan in place to appeal to women before they cast their votes on November 8. The real estate tycoon responded that his childcare plan was for women, but that women want what all Americans supporting him want.
“What women want is they want secure borders, they want safety, they want law and order, they want a police department that’s allowed to do its job,” Trump said. “They want justice for all; they want a lot of things everybody else wants. And Hillary Clinton can’t do it.”
At the beginning of their interview, O’Reilly promised to let Trump say if he felt he was being treated “unfairly” at any point during the interview so that the anchor could change his line of questioning.
Trump never invoked this unfair cry, but the two continuously spoke over one another throughout the conversation. O’Reilly even joked later in the hour that he “might be banned after that interview,” a reference to Trump’s tendency to ban news organisations he disagrees with from accessing his campaign events.
The tougher Trump, evocative of the candidate he was during the Republican primary, seems to be freer to express himself than he has in months.
“It is so nice that the shackles have been taken off me,” he wrote on Twitter earlier in the day, “and I can now fight for America the way I want to.”
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