Donald Trump apologized in a video statement on Friday night for sexually aggressive comments he made in the past.
"I said it. I was wrong, and I apologize," Trump said.
He pledged to be a better man and called the incident, "nothing more than a distraction from the important issues we're facing today."
The Republican presidential nominee signed off with a hint at an argument he might make against his political opponent Hillary Clinton in the second presidential debate on Sunday night.
"Bill Clinton has actually abused women, and Hillary has bullied, attacked, shamed and intimidated his victims. We will discuss this more in the coming days," Trump said referencing past allegations of sexual assault and misconduct made by various women against President Bill Clinton.
In a tape that surfaced earlier in the day, Donald Trump was caught bragging in vulgar terms about trying to have sex with a married woman and talking about groping women.
He is heard saying, "When you're a star, they let you do it. You can do anything… grab 'em by the p*ssy."
The tape obtained by the Washington Post captures Trump on open microphone bantering with Billy Bush, then the host of "Access Hollywood," while taping a segment in which Trump was making a cameo appearance in 2005.
"I'm automatically attracted to beautiful women — I just start kissing them, it's like a magnet. Just kiss. I don't even wait," Trump says on the tape.
The conversation occurred just months after Trump married his third and current wife, Melania.
In his discussion with Bush, Trump recalls making sexual advances toward a married woman.
"I moved on her actually, she was down in Palm Beach, and I failed. I'll admit it. I did try to f**k her, she was married … and I moved on her very heavily," Trump is heard saying on tape.
The discussion offers insight into how Trump has spoken about women in private and suggests sexually aggressive behavior.
"I took her out furniture shopping. She wanted to get some furniture and I told her 'I'll show you where you can get some nice furniture,'" Trump says. "I moved on her like a b*tch, and I could not get there, and she was married."
The tape release prompted Trump to give in an open statement.
"This was locker room banter, a private conversation that took place many years ago," Trump said in the statement. "Bill Clinton has said far worse to me on the golf course — not even close. I apologize if anyone was offended."
Hillary Clinton tweeted in response that "This is horrific. We cannot allow this man to become president."
This is horrific. We cannot allow this man to become president. https://t.co/RwhW7yeFI2
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) October 7, 2016
This kind of behavior is disgusting. It makes me sick to my stomach. https://t.co/mOUKgr6axl — Senator Tim Kaine (@timkaine) October 7, 2016
This new revelation could add to Trump's challenge to sway more female voters with just a month until Election Day.
Republican National Committee chairman Reince Priebus also slammed Trump in an open statement on Friday.
"No woman should ever be described in these terms or talked about in this manner. Ever," Preibus said.
Students at the University of Southern California also expressed strong reactions towards Trump's vulgar words about women.
"His comments are disgusting and deplorable," said Mary Perez, Vice President of USC College Republicans. "Women should never be objectified in that way and should be held in a place of high esteem. We are strong, powerful, and deserve so much more respect."
"I'll never believe that he is a guy contesting for the U.S. presidential election," said USC student Madhav Sharan. "Just imagine, he's having such kind of conversations with Prime Ministers and Presidents of other countries."
"I think that someone so misogynist and demeaning towards women shouldn't have a role in office, and for him to speak that way, even 10 years ago, is completely irresponsible," said Sheriden Smith, a USC student. "A leader is supposed to respect everyone no matter what race, sex … Yes, it was in the past, but I think that still reflects his character."