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Rep. Barbara Comstock, R-10th, urges Trump to drop out of presidential race, calls his comments 'vile and disqualifying'
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Rep. Barbara Comstock, R-10th, urges Trump to drop out of presidential race, calls his comments 'vile and disqualifying'

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Rep. Barbara J. Comstock, R-10th, is urging Donald Trump to drop out as the Republican presidential nominee following Friday's reports about a 2005 tape in which Trump lewdly spoke about women.

Late Friday night Trump apologized in a video statement and acknowledged that he had made the recorded comments in which he crudely spoke of trying to have sex with a married woman and talked of grabbing women by the genitals.

"This is disgusting, vile and disqualifying," Comstock said in a statement first reported by The Washington Post.

"No woman should ever be subjected to this type of obscene behavior and it is unbecoming of anybody seeking high office.

"In light of these comments, Donald Trump should step aside and allow our party to replace him with Mike Pence or another appropriate nominee from the Republican Party.

"I cannot in good conscience vote for Donald Trump and I never would vote for Hillary Clinton."

Comstock is seeking a second term representing a diverse Northern Virginia district that stretches west from Fairfax and Loudoun counties to Winchester.

Trump is highly unpopular in the booming Northern Virginia suburbs. In the Virginia poll that The Washington Post released Aug. 16, Clinton led Trump in the D.C. suburbs by 68 percent to 23 percent.

Hours before Comstock issued her statement late Friday night, her Democratic opponent, LuAnn Bennett had called the congresswoman's silence unacceptable.

"Trump's actions are vile and disgusting," Bennett said. "These latest revelations are shocking, but they are sadly not surprising.

"Donald Trump has demeaned women since before he ran for public office, and the Republican Party, with a few exceptions, have stood with him and enabled him every step of the way."

The Washington Post reported that Comstock's response came out late Friday night because she had been attending the rehearsal dinner for her son's wedding.

Comstock has worked for months to distance herself from Trump.

In December she condemned Trump's call for a "total and complete shutdown" on Muslims entering the U.S. Comstock called it "unconstitutional" and "unAmerican."

In March Comstock returned $3,000 in donations from Trump. In May, she told The Winchester Star that Trump had not yet earned her support.

"I can't support Hillary Clinton, but I'm like any voter, a candidate has to earn my vote, and at this time Donald Trump has not done so," Comstock said at the time.

Comstock reportedly did not mention Trump's name on Thursday when she and Bennett met for their first debate at a forum sponsored by the Loudoun County Chamber of Commerce. Bennett, a former wife of ex-Rep. Jim Moran, D-8th, tried to tie Comstock to Trump during the debate.

Comstock is among the Republicans Virginia pundits mention as a potential candidate for the seat of Sen. Tim Kaine, D-Va. if he is elected vice president on Nov. 8.

acain@timesdispatch.com

(804) 649-6645

Twitter: @AndrewCainRTD

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