Donald Trump refuses to apologize over menstruation remark
The frontrunner in the U.S. opposition Republican Party presidential primary, Donald Trump, on Sunday refused to apologize for a crude attack on a female Fox News journalist that sparked widespread outrage, insisting he was misunderstood.
The brash billionaire — who is leading a packed Republican field of White House hopefuls — found himself at the center of controversy after seeming to suggest that Megyn Kelly, one of the moderators of last week’s presidential debate, asked him tough questions because she was menstruating.
“You can see there was blood coming out of her eyes, blood coming out of her wherever,” Trump told CNN on Friday. The comment prompted the organizer of a major conservative forum in Atlanta to withdraw his invitation.
But on Sunday, Trump said only “sick” people or a “deviant” would have concluded he was talking about Kelly’s period.
“I cherish women. I want to help women,” Trump said in a phone interview with CNN’s “State of the Union” news program.
“Who would make a statement like that? Only a sick person would even think about it.”
When asked why many of his fellow candidates and conservative pundits had reached the same conclusion about his comment, Trump replied: “They want to be politically correct. They want to get points. I’m leading in the polls.”
Trump nevertheless did not offer an apology.
He said only that he had “nothing against” Kelly — and then he doubled down on his criticism of her, again saying she had asked him “unfair” questions during the debate.
In an interview with Fox News before Trump’s “blood” comment, Kelly appeared unfazed by the debate dust-up.
“He felt attacked. It wasn’t an attack. It was a fair question. But I get it. He’s in the arena and so am I. It’s OK with me that there is some consternation. He will get over that,” she said.
When asked about being attacked, she said: “I’m a big girl. I can take it.”