Bob Dole stands by Trump

Bob Dole, the 1996 GOP presidential nominee, said he is sticking by Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpOver 100 lawmakers consistently voted against chemical safeguards: study CNN's Anderson Cooper unloads on Trump Jr. for spreading 'idiotic' conspiracy theories about him Cohn: Jamie Dimon would be 'phenomenal' president MORE, the current Republican nominee. 

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Dole, a former senator from Kansas, told The Wall Street Journal he would be hard-pressed to back away from the party’s nominee in the wake of Trump’s lewd talk about women caught on tape.  

“I look at it a little differently,” Dole said. “I’ve been a Republican forever. The party has been very good to me. I’ve had many opportunities as a Republican, and I find it very difficult to desert the party after Trump won 40 percent of the vote in the primary.” 

Dole is now the only former GOP nominee who backs Trump — Mitt Romney has been a steadfast critic of the billionaire, and Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainAnother recession could hit US in 2019, says credit union association chief R-E-S-P-E-C-T: One legacy of Franklin and McCain is up to us To cure Congress, elect more former military members MORE (Ariz.) rescinded his support Saturday. Both George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush have stayed silent on the 2016 race.

“It was 11 years ago,” Dole said of Trump's explicit comments. “He shouldn’t have said it, but there’s nothing he can do about it except to do well in the debate. I think he can overcome a lot of this in the debate tomorrow night.”

“The Clintons aren’t pure either,” Dole added.