Billy Bush To President Trump: “Yes, You Said That!”
Billy Bush is attempting to re-enter the public eye, and he’s starting by sending a direct shot to President Donald Trump.
“Yes, Donald Trump, You Said That,” is the headline of Billy Bush’s op-ed for The New York Times Sunday night. Published online one day before Bush’s appearance on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, Bush said that he decided to speak out after news reports indicated that Trump has been attempting to cast doubt on the authenticity of the Access Hollywood tape that led to the infamous “grab ‘em by the p***y” remark made by Trump.
The 12-year-old tape, which resurfaced in the final weeks of the presidential election campaign last year, found Bush and Trump speaking profanely about women — and Trump bragged about sexual assault. “When you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything … Grab ‘em by the p***y. You can do anything,” Trump said while Bush laughed along. “He said it. ‘Grab ‘em by the p***y,’” Bush wrote in his op-ed Sunday. “Of course he said it. Every single one of us assumed we were listening to a crass stand-up act,” Bush said. “He was performing. Surely, we thought, none of this was real. We now know better.”
The crash was hard on Bush—related to former presidents George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush—who lost his job on NBC’s Today and severely damaged his reputation when the tape went public. Meanwhile, Trump won the election and managed to sidestep numerous allegations of sexual harassment and assault from his past. Elsewhere in the op-ed, Bush recounted the specific allegations made by Jill Harth and Kristin Anderson, saying he believed them. “I can only imagine how it has reopened the wounds of the women who came forward with their stories about him, and did not receive enough attention,” Bush wrote.
Trump has flatly denied the allegations against him. He recently repeated his assertion that he was merely engaging in “locker room talk” with Bush. White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders even was asked about the allegations at a press briefing last month. “This was litigated and certainly answered during the election by the overwhelming support for the president and the fact that he’s sitting here in the Oval Office today,” she said. With hopes of returning back to the public eye, Bush said in the Times piece that “this last year has been an odyssey, the likes of which I hope to never face again: anger, anxiety, betrayal, humiliation, many selfish but, I hope, understandable emotions. But these have given way to light, both spiritual and intellectual. It’s been fortifying.”
As Billy Bush hints at that he has more to say, it’s unclear if he has any other TV appearances outside his Colbert stop on Monday night. But what’s even more interesting is if Trump will jab back at the comments Bush made in the “failing” New York Times on Twitter.