Earlier today, The Washington Post uploaded a piece of video footage from 2005, in which NBC entertainment reporter Billy Bush and Donald Trump, the Republican candidate for the presidency of the United States, casually discuss their raging need to have sex with the women around them, and kiss and grope them without their consent. The audio appears to have been inadvertently recorded as part of a potential Access Hollywood piece about Trump’s cameo on Days Of Our Lives, and opens with an anecdote about a woman the mogul once attempted to seduce:
And I moved on her very heavily. In fact, I took her out furniture shopping. She wanted to get some furniture. I said, ‘I’ll 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. Then all of a sudden I see her, she’s now got the big phony tits and everything. She’s totally changed her look.
Trump’s recollection is interrupted by Bush catching sight of actress Arianne Zucker, the woman scheduled to be Trump’s guide onto the show’s set. “Sheesh, your girl’s hot as shit! In the purple,” Bush remarks. Trump responds with a “Whoa! Whoa!” while Bush—who’s currently the co-host of NBC’s Today—congratulates him on the appearance of the woman he will briefly be standing near: “Yes! The Donald has scored!”
Trump then embarks on a brief monologue about the influence of his celebrity, and his own lack of self-control. “I better use some Tic Tacs, just in case I start kissing her. 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. You can do anything. Grab them by the pussy”—this with a laugh, despite the fact that at least one woman has accused Trump of sexually assaulting her in exactly that way—“You can do anything.” They then depart the bus—after a little more salivation from Bush on the topic of Zucker’s legs—at which point the Access Hollywood host aggressively asks the actress “How about a little hug for the Donald?” a request to which Zucker gamely obliges. Trump: “Melania said this was okay.”
The three then head onto the set, with Bush continuing his role as Trump’s self-appointed wingman, asking a ducking Zucker which of the two men she’d rather go on a date with. “Now, if you had to choose, honestly, between me and The Donald,” Bush asks. “Seriously, if you had to take one on a date.” “I have to take the Fifth on that one,” Zucker deflects, before threading the needle with a diplomatic “I’ll take both.”
Bush has so far declined to comment on the video, and its depiction of him as a leering, sexually aggressive facilitator for “The Donald.” (He deleted his Twitter account back in August, apparently.) Trump, on the other hand, is treating the video like just another grease stain floating on the surface of the brackish swamp of garbage misogyny that is his soul, attempting to score political points and play his comments off as high spirits. “This was locker room banter, a private conversation that took place many years ago. Bill Clinton has said far worse to me on the golf course—not even close,” Trump said in a statement, reiterating one of his favorite recent themes.
He finished with “I apologize if anyone was offended,” which, along with “boys will be boys,” is the battle cry of dangerously unapologetic dirtbags everywhere. In other news, someone out there is still going to vote for him, citing his “refreshing honesty” in the clip.