At this point, the Access Hollywood tape with Donald Trump and Billy Bush is infamous. Then-candidate Trump brazenly implicated himself as someone who regularly commits sexual assault. After the fact, he tried to brush it off as “locker room talk,” and saying he’s “heard worse from Bill Clinton.”
Apparently, at some point during the last year, Trump’s narrative in his head started to change. Maybe he never said that stuff at all. Maybe like so many other aspects of reality, the tape was just “fake news.” At least, that’s what he told at least two people in his orbit over recent months. The New York Times reported on this recently:
‘But something deeper has been consuming Mr. Trump. He sees the calls for Mr. Moore to step aside as a version of the response to the now-famous “Access Hollywood” tape, in which he boasted about grabbing women’s genitalia, and the flood of groping accusations against him that followed soon after. He suggested to a senator earlier this year that it was not authentic, and repeated that claim to an adviser more recently. (In the hours after it was revealed in October 2016, Mr. Trump acknowledged that the voice was his, and he apologized.)’
Unfortunately for the new narrative Trump is trying to form, Access Hollywood just fired back – and they’re not taking Trump’s crap. Watch below:
TRUMP: The “Access Hollywood” tape might be fake
ACCESS HOLLYWOOD: What you talkin’ ’bout Willis? pic.twitter.com/EOFtO26czr
— Judd Legum (@JuddLegum) November 28, 2017
‘We wanted to clear something up that has been reported across the media landscape. According to The New York Times, President Trump told two people that the Access Hollywood bus tape – the one where he bragged about grabbing women by the you-know-what –is fake.
‘Let us make this perfectly clear: The tape is very real. Remember, his excuse at the time was “locker room talk.”‘
It’s unclear if this is a propaganda technique or if the senile pathological liar-in-chief has genuinely convinced himself that he didn’t say those things.
Whatever the case may be, Trump’s not the only one to confirm the legitimacy of the tape. Steve Bannon, in a rare interview, admitted the tape was a “litmus test.” Trump’s team thinks that any Republicans who criticized him for those comments are “disloyal” (being anti-rape in Trump’s White House is, apparently, disloyalty).
The video of Access Hollywood shooting down Trump’s reality-rewriting dreams got quite the response on social media:
Here’s another take from Jordan Klepper:
What is the point of Trump lying about this? Well, that’d be hard to say. Maybe he wanted those people to think better of him at that moment, and it came from a place of insecurity and cowardly thoughtlessness. Maybe he knows some big story is about to break in the press and planted the seeds as a distraction. Or, possibly, he truly believes at this point that he didn’t say those things, due to psychological problems and possible cognitive decline.
In any case, one thing is very clear: The tape is real. The veracity was never in question. Trump’s after-the-fact attempt to relitigate the situation is causing him nothing but ridicule and reminding the nation that the commander-in-chief has outed himself as a harasser and assaulter of women.
Featured image via Rob Kim/Getty Images