TV personality Billy Bush is finally breaking his silence about the infamous 2005 "Access Hollywood" tape that nearly put President Donald Trump's campaign in jeopardy (video below).
In a "Good Morning America" interview with Robin Roberts, Bush says he would have called the FBI if he believed Trump truly assaulted women, Yahoo News reports.
"If I had ever thought ... that there was a grown man sitting in front of me detailing his sexual assault strategy, I would have called the FBI," Bush said.
He continues, explaining Trump's "grab them by the p****" comment was simply "braggadocio."
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"With Trump, it's not much of a give-and-take," added Bush. "When he said what he said at the end ... to me, it was more braggadocio -- his word -- and performance."
But while he believes Trump's comments were not serious, he acknowledges the remarks were sexist, adding his 16-year-old daughter cried hearing the tape.
"She was really upset, and I said, ‘Mary, it’s, it’s, going to be OK. You know, don’t worry,'" Bush recalled, People magazine reports. "And she said, 'No. Why were you laughing at the things that he was saying on that bus? Why were you playing along with it, Dad? It wasn’t funny.'"
Bush says the incident, which caused him to lose his job, prompted serious soul-searching.
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He has since apologized profusely to his daughter, the public, and the woman -- Nancy O’Dell, who forgave him -- he made sexists comments about in the tape, Inquistr reports.
"I said, 'Mary, I am sorry. And there is no good answer for that,'" said Bush, who adds he wished he'd stood up to Trump at the time.
"I remember the guy on the other side ... Twelve years ago, it was my first year as co-host of the show," he said, adding he didn't have the "strength of character" to fight back. "I was insecure ... I was a pleaser."
Bush now urges other young men in the industry to learn from his experience.
"Do not doubt yourself," he advised. "Stay true to who you are. I sacrificed, you know, my own dignity in that moment. I was very pleased to say goodbye to that guy."
While he noted the "glaring" irony he lost his job while Trump won the presidency, Bush admits he understands the public's response.
"I understand people's reaction," he said. "I agree. I also felt that way."
"I am only ready to get back to work now because there is purpose and there is clarity and there is acceptance and there is a changed person," Bush later added. "I do feel like a better man."