As the clamor grows louder for the release of potentially embarrassing tapes from
The leak last week of an Access Hollywood tape of Trump making obscene remarks about sexually assaulting women has severely damaged his already flagging campaign. That leak followed an Associated Press report last week that former cast and crew of Apprentice said Trump repeatedly demeaned women with sexist language, rated female contestants by the size of their breasts, and talked about which ones he'd like to have sex with.
Now Trump's critics and political opponents want to comb through 14 seasons of unaired tapes of the The Apprentice, when Trump hosted as the judge testing the business skills of contestants, in the hunt for more embarrassing bombshells.
It's not going to happen, Burnett reiterated, while also making it clear he is not supporting Trump for president.
“Given all of the false media reports, I feel compelled to clarify a few points," Burnett said in the statement emailed to USA TODAY. "I am not now and have never been a supporter of Donald Trump’s candidacy. I am NOT 'Pro-Trump.' Further, my wife (actress
Marvin Putnam, a lawyer for entertainment giant MGM, which bought Burnett's production firm in December, reiterated in the statement that MGM, not Burnett, now owns The Apprentice. Burnett is the president of MGM.
"MGM has agreements with artists across a wide spectrum of creative properties, including The Apprentice,” Putnam said. "These agreements typically contain provisions related to confidentiality and artist’s rights. MGM has every intention of complying with its agreements with artists and honoring their rights, including with respect to The Apprentice."
It was not made clear which "artists" the statement was referring to — Trump or someone else.
Burnett and MGM issued a similar statement late Monday. Burnett said then that he doesn't have the right to release footage from the show because MGM owns it, and MGM can't release it because of "various contractual and legal requirements." Burnett also said he had supported Democratic candidates.
Nevertheless, public pressure continued to mount from former Apprentice contestants, Democrats and crusading women's rights attorney
Allred, who's lately best known for representing dozens of
A petition posted on MoveOn.org by the national women's advocacy organization UltraViolet Action calling for the tapes to be released had gathered more than 115,000 signatures by Wednesday. A
Trump dismissed his 2005 Access remarks as mere "locker-room talk," but The Daily Show found footage from Season 9 of Celebrity Apprentice when he fired contestant pro-wrestler
"He fired me for what I said and what he said was much worse," she said in an interview with Entertainment Tonight. "I don’t think that was locker-room talk. I think it was sexual assault," she said about his remarks about grabbing women by the genitals.