Former US Republican presidential candidate and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie delivers a speech on the second day of the Republican National Convention on July 19, 2016 at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by AFP)
Former US Republican presidential candidate Chris Christie has said an 11-year-old tape that shows Donald Trump making lewd comments about women is “indefensible”, but added he will not pull his support from the GOP presidential nominee.
“On the video itself, let’s be really clear, it is completely indefensible. And I won’t defend it and haven’t defended it. That kind of talk and conversation, even in private, is just unacceptable,” New Jersey Governor Christie said on Tuesday.
Christie was one of the first establishment Republicans to endorse Trump back in February shortly after suspending his own presidential bid. Since then, he has been one of Trump’s closest advisers.
But Christie went silent after The Washington Post released a recording on Friday in which Trump is heard making vulgar comments about women and having a conversation about trying to have sex with a married woman.
GOP officials, including governors, senators and congressmen across the US have disavowed the former reality TV star over the sexually obscene remarks caught on a hot microphone.
Trump’s apology for the remarks has also failed to quell the unprecedented controversy over his comments, prompting growing demands by Republicans for him to quit the race.
“I made that very clear to Donald on Friday when that first came out and urged him to be contrite and apologetic because that’s what he needs to be,” Christie said. “For me this is just stuff that you can’t, can’t be involved in and shouldn’t even be thinking.”
Christie said he was not satisfied with Trump’s apology. “I would have done it much differently. But I do think he’s sorry and I do think he’s embarrassed by it.”
Donald Trump (L) and Chris Christie (R) attend the September 11 Commemoration Ceremony at the National September 11 Memorial & Museum on September 11, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by AFP) 
The New Jersey governor acknowledged that the Trump tape made him really upset, “but in the end this election is about bigger issues than that.”
In the first major poll published after the damaging revelation, Trump’s Democratic rival, Hillary Clinton, was having a 14-percentage-point lead over him.
In a two-way race, Clinton now enjoys 52 percent of support compared to 38 percent Trump has among likely voters nationally, showed the NBC News-Wall Street Journal survey released on Monday.