Donald Trump issued a video apology via social media shortly after midnight EST, for remarks that had surfaced from a 'hot microphone' eleven years ago.
"I'm not a perfect person," he said. "I've said and done things I regret. I said it. I was wrong and I apologize."
The video is just over a minute long and after about 40 seconds of apologizing and promising to "be a better man," he then called the issue a "distraction" from the problems in the country. He ended by saying that he would see everyone at the debate on Sunday.
In the video that came out earlier Friday, Trump and Access Hollywood host Billy Bush are heard, but not seen, on hot microphones joking about Trump's sexual exploits.
"I moved on her and I failed. I'll admit it," Trump says early in the video. "I did try and f--- her. She was married."
Trump tells Bush he took the woman furniture shopping as he tried to seduce her.
"I moved on her like a b****, but I couldn't get there. And she was married," Trump says. "Then all of a sudden I see her, she's now got the big phony t--s and everything. She's totally changed her look."
Trump was married to his third wife Melania at the time the tape was recorded. It is unclear when the events discussed on it occurred.
The video caused an immediate uproar with even Trump supporters calling it abhorrent. An event that was scheduled for Saturday with Paul Ryan and Trump was changed and will no longer include Trump, who said he would be working on "debate prep."
There was reaction on social media from a couple of local U.S. Congressmen from the state of Louisiana.
"Women deserve to be treated with respect. Period. Considering the nature of his comments, Donald should make a direct apology." -Steve Scalise
Here is the entire text of Trump's statement:
"I've never said I'm a perfect person nor pretended to be someone that I'm not. I've said and done things I regret, and the words released today on this more than a decade old video, are one of them.
Anyone who knows me, knows these words don't reflect who I am.
I said it, I was wrong and I apologize.
I've traveled the country talking about change for America, but my travels have also changed me.
I've spent time with grieving mothers who've lost their children.
Laid off workers whose jobs have gone to other countries.
And people from all walks of life, who just want a better future.
I have gotten to know the great people of our country, and I've been humbled by the faith they've placed in me.
I pledge to be a better man tomorrow, and will never ever let you down.
Let's be honest. We're living in the real world.
This is nothing more than a distraction from the important issues we're facing today.
We are losing our jobs, we are less safe than we were eight years ago and Washington is completely broken.
Hillary Clinton and her kind have run our country into the ground.
I've said some foolish things, but there's a big difference between the words and actions of other people.
Bill Clinton has actually abused women and Hillary has bullied, attacked, shamed and intimidated his victims.
We will discuss this more in the coming days.
See you at the debate on Sunday."
(© 2017 WWL)