A recent political ad by an anti-Trump super PAC featured women simply repeating various insults Trump has made to or about women in the past. The New York Times fact-checked it—and confirmed, yes, Trump had said all those things.
In an interview yesterday with the conservative radio host Charlie Sykes, Donald Trump was given the opportunity to apologize for those loathsome and sexist comments. He didn’t take it.
When Sykes asked him about it, the GOP frontrunner argued that none of those things should be taken seriously, because he never thought they would come to light in a future presidential campaign.
“Women are just going to have to see what I’ve done,” said Trump. “I’ve hired tremendous numbers of women. Women are in the highest executive positions. I pay women in many cases more than I pay men, which is more than most people can say.”
(You can hear Trump’s response to the question about the super PAC ad at around 3:50. Sykes also asks Trump to apologize to Wisconsin women for mocking Ted Cruz’s wife right at the beginning of the interview. )
At the time he said most of those things, Trump goes on to explain, he was a celebrity, not a politician.
“I’ve been a person that’s been in the entertainment business, and a very big person in business, and I’ve been quoted over the years by everybody,” he added. “Almost from the time I started business. For whatever reason. I became a celebrity in a sense.”
“Certainly, I never thought I would run for office,” he said when Sykes asked if the rules are different for celebrities.
The answer may come as a bit of a surprise—not just because of the huge non-apology, but because Trump does have a history of saying he would consider running for president, going back decades. In an 1988 interview, Trump told Oprah Winfrey that he would consider a presidential bid if things got “so bad.”