Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally, Monday, Oct. 10, 2016, in Ambridge, Pa. (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)

By Jeff Horseman, The Press-Enterprise
and Martin Wisckol, The Orange County Register
Posted: 10/10/16 – 8:58 PM PDT |

With one exception, Republican elected officials and candidates in Southern California continue to stand by Donald Trump despite his comments about women in 2005 that were widely condemned as boasting about sexual assault.

Trump’s lewd banter with TV personality Billy Bush, in which Trump bragged he could kiss and grope women because he was a star, came to light Friday. Since then, Republican senators, governors and congressional representatives nationwide have disavowed the GOP presidential nominee or called for him to step aside.

House Speaker Paul Ryan said Monday he would not campaign with or defend Trump, although he did not withdraw his support. Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus reportedly said the party still stands by Trump.

Ryan’s comments prompted a retort from Trump via Twitter: “Paul Ryan should spend more time on balancing the budget, jobs and illegal immigration and not waste his time on fighting Republican nominee.”

Trump’s candidacy has been an issue in the 25th Congressional District race between Rep. Steve Knight, R-Santa Clarita, and Democrat Bryan Caforio. The district includes portions of northern Los Angeles County and southern Ventura County.

Knight withdrew his support for Trump on Saturday.

“In my career as a law enforcement professional, I was confronted with and worked tirelessly to end the horrific reality of violence toward women,” Knight said in a statement.

“After hearing Donald Trump’s inexcusable comments last night, I was deeply disturbed and reminded of that reprehensible behavior. And after serious consideration, I have decided that I cannot support either candidate for president.”

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