New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, one of Donald Trump’s staunchest advocates, denounced the Republican presidential candidate’s lewd comments about women in a leaked 2005 tape, saying he was with Trump when the video surfaced.
“Let’s be really clear. It is completely indefensible,” Christie told Craig Carton on WFAN this morning when asked about the comments. “I won’t defend it and haven’t defended it. That kind of talk and conversation, even in private, is just unacceptable.”
While co-hosting WFAN’s “Boomer and Carton Show” in New York City this morning, Christie weighed in on the hot-mic conversation between Trump and Billy Bush, at the time a host of “Access Hollywood.” In the recording, Trump is heard talking about how he tried to have an affair with a married woman and how he makes moves on women, which some critics have labeled sexual assault.
Christie, who dropped out of the 2016 presidential race in February, said he was with Trump when the recording was leaked and advised him to offer a sincere apology. Christie also told the GOP presidential nominee that he was “upset,” “disturbed” and “disappointed” by his vulgar remarks.
“I made that very clear to Donald on Friday when this first came out and, you know, urged him to be contrite and apologetic because that’s what he needs to be,” Christie said. “This is just, you know, stuff that you just can’t, can’t be involved in and shouldn’t even be thinking.”
A number of Republican politicians have come out against Trump since the tape, first obtained by The Washington Post, was released Friday. The conversation reportedly took place while Trump and Bush were arriving on the set of “Days of Our Lives” in 2005 for a segment about the businessman’s cameo on the soap opera.
“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,” Trump can be heard saying on the tape.
“And when you’re a star, they let you do it ... You can do anything.”
“Whatever you want,” another voice is heard saying, apparently Bush’s.
“Grab them by the p----,” Trump says. “You can do anything.”
Trump next tells Bush about how he tried to have an affair with an unidentified woman. The recording reportedly occurred several months after Trump married his third wife, Melania Trump.
“I moved on her, and I failed. I’ll admit it,” Trump said.
“I did try and f--- her. She was married,” he said, going on to say that he took her furniture shopping and later describing how she had changed her looks.
“I moved on her like a b----, but I couldn’t get there. And she was married,” he said. “Then all of a sudden I see her, she’s now got the big phony t--- and everything. She’s totally changed her look.”
Trump released a written statement after the recording was leaked, saying, “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. I apologize if anyone was offended.”
A day later, Trump released a videotaped statement. “I’ve never said I’m a perfect person nor pretended to be someone that I’m not,” he said. “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.”
Bush also apologized for the remarks in a statement to Politico.
“Obviously, I’m embarrassed and ashamed. It’s no excuse, but this happened 11 years ago. I was younger, less mature, and acted foolishly in playing along. I’m very sorry,” he said, according to the news website.
When asked this morning whether he thought Trump’s apology was enough, Christie responded, “I didn’t think it was on Friday or Saturday, and I told him that. I would have done it much differently.”
“He should have been much more direct and much more focused on saying, just saying, “‘I’m sorry’ and only ‘I’m sorry,’” Christie added. “I do think he’s sorry, and I do think he’s embarrassed by it. No question in my mind about it. I was there when he found out about it.”
Despite the comments, Christie said he’s still behind Trump.
“I’m still supporting Donald,” Christie said on WFAN this morning. “Obviously, I’m disappointed by what happened and, you know, disappointed in some respects by the response initially. But I’m still supporting him.”
Christie said he doesn’t feel Trump’s comments from 11 years ago should be the only reason voters don’t support him in the presidential race against Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.
“Again, you know, anybody who hears that, that video, was disturbed by it and offended by it, and as well they should be,” he said. “But I don’t think it’s the only way you should make a judgment.”
ABC News’ Mark Crudele, Rachel Katz and Meghan Keneally contributed to this report.