“He said it. ‘Grab ‘em by the pussy.'”
In an op-ed for The New York Times on Sunday, Billy Bush firmly reminded the president that the tape, in which he made his “grab ’em” comment on an Access Hollywood bus, absolutely happened.
After confessing to the 2005 comments as “locker room talk,” and apologising for them 2016, Trump has been recently suggesting to allies that the tape — the one published by the Washington Post in which Trump speaks to Bush and casually advocates sexual assault — wasn’t real.
But former Access Hollywood host Bush isn’t having it, and details the circumstances of the statements in his New York Times piece.
“Of course he said it. And we laughed along, without a single doubt that this was hypothetical hot air from America’s highest-rated bloviator,” he writes.
“Along with Donald Trump and me, there were seven other guys present on the bus at the time, and every single one of us assumed we were listening to a crass standup act. He was performing. Surely, we thought, none of this was real.
“We now know better … Today is about reckoning and reawakening, and I hope it reaches all the guys on the bus.”
Bush says the president is “indulging in some revisionist history,” by privately saying that the voice on the tape is not his.
After disputing this thoroughly, Bush brings up an article from Oct. 2016, published after he left NBC. The article details the alleged firsthand accounts of 20 women accusing Trump of sexual assault and harassment, including stories from Natasha Stoynoff, Rachel Crooks, Jessica Leeds, Jill Harth and Kristin Anderson.
“I believe her,” says Bush of Anderson’s account of Trump allegedly groping her in a New York nightclub in the 1990s. “That makes the “grab ‘em by the pussy” routine real,” he writes, and continues into a direct address to Trump’s accusers.
“This moment in American life is no doubt painful for many women. It is especially painful for the women who have come forward, at the risk of forever being linked to one event, this man, this president of the United States. (I still can’t believe I just wrote that.)
“To these women: I will never know the fear you felt or the frustration of being summarily dismissed and called a liar, but I do know a lot about the anguish of being inexorably linked to Donald Trump. You have my respect and admiration. You are culture warriors at the forefront of necessary change.”
Watch Twitter, folks. This ain’t done.