Rudy Giuliani
Evan Vucci/AP
Blake Bakkila
October 09, 2016 01:39 PM

Rudy Giuliani is one of the few GOP leaders who is standing by Donald Trump.

In an interview with George Stephanopoulos on This Week on Sunday, the former New York City mayor defended the Republican presidential candidate when he was questioned about the now-infamous video of Trump’s lewd comments toward women in a 2005 conversation with then-Access Hollywood host Billy Bush.

“My reaction was the same, I’m sure as everyone else’s,” he responded to Stephanopoulos’s question about his reaction to the video release. “It’s horrible. It’s reprehensible. You wish it never happened and never was said. And I think Donald Trump … expressed that very, very clearly, that he’s ashamed of himself and he’s embarrassed by what he did.”

Stephanopoulos then asked about the validity of the claims made by Trump, as many — including Vice President Joe Biden — have said the behavior Trump described in 2005 amounts to sexual assault. Giuliani did not disavow the “sexual assault” label. “That’s what [Trump] was talking about,” Giuliani acknowledged. “Whether it happened or not, I don’t know. And how much exaggeration was involved in that? I don’t know.”

Continued Giuliani: “I do know there’s a tendency on the part of some men at different times to exaggerate things like this and I’m not in any way trying to excuse or condone it.”

One of Giuliani’s defenses was the length of time that has passed since Trump made those statements 11 years ago.

“That’s far different than what you heard on that tape of 10 or 12 years ago,” he said, when asked to talk about Trump’s more recent remarks about former Miss Universe Alicia Machado. “And he’s very embarrassed by it. I have to tell you that.”

RELATED VIDEO: Alicia Machado: “[The] United States is not a reality show.”

And Giuliani had little to say when asked if he could assure that another scandal would not break.

“I do think anybody can assure anyone about anything in this election,” he said. “I can’t assure you that there aren’t other things that will help on our side or their side.”

As for Sunday night’s second presidential debate, Giuliani thinks his candidate is prepared.

“I think Donald Trump understands that tonight’s debate is — it was always going to be very important and the stakes have gotten a lot higher as a result of these revelations. But I think he’ll be up to it.”

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