Melania Trump defends Donald Trump: He was 'egged on' to make comments with Billy Bush

By Elahe Izadi

Former Access Hollywood host Billy Bush encouraged Donald Trump to make inappropriate remarks about women in a 2005 video, Melania Trump told CNN's Anderson Cooper in an interview scheduled to air Monday.

The news network ran a story previewing Melania Trump's first on-camera defence of her husband since The Washington Post published the 2005 video of Bush and the now-Republican presidential nominee speaking on a hot microphone.

She said that Trump and Bush had been engaged in "boy talk" and Trump "was led on - like, egged on - from the host to say dirty and bad stuff."

"I said to my husband that, you know, the language was inappropriate. It's not acceptable," Melania Trump told Cooper in an interview that will air at 8pm in the States. "And I was surprised, because that is not the man that I know."

"And as you can see from the tape, the cameras were not on - it was only a mic. And I wonder if they even knew that the mic was on," she said, according to CNN.

Many of the comments were recorded while Bush, Trump and others were on a bus and mic'ed, and not while on camera.

In one exchange, Trump says he just starts kissing beautiful women.

"I don't even wait. And when you're a star, they let you do it. You can do anything."

Bush responded, "Whatever you want."

Anderson Cooper, of CNN. Photo / AP
Anderson Cooper, of CNN. Photo / AP

Shortly after the 2005 tape surfaced, NBC placed Bush on suspension from his anchor duties on the Today show. Bush and the network are working on a separation agreement; the settlement could reportedly be worth millions of dollars.

Bush addressed the controversy hours after the video, saying in a statement, "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."

The Republican nominee has since described his comments as "locker-room talk."

In a previous statement, Melania Trump said, "the words my husband used are unacceptable and offensive to me. This does not represent the man that I know. He has the heart and mind of a leader."

- Washington Post

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