Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump said at the second presidential debate that his lewd remarks from 2005 were "locker room talk" before pivoting to the rise of ISIS.

“You bragged that you have sexually assaulted women, do you understand that?" moderator Anderson Cooper asked.

Trump repeatedly dismissed his remarks as "locker room talk" before going on to say that he would "knock the hell out of ISIS."

Cooper then questioned: "Did you actually kiss women without consent?" Trump said he didn't and that he has "great respect for women."

Clinton responded, "He has said the video doesn't represent who he is, but I think it's clear to anyone who heard it that it represents exactly who he is."

Trump then took aim at former President Bill Clinton, alleging that he was "abusive to women" and that Hillary Clinton “attacked them viciously.” But Clinton fired back with Michelle Obama’s motto, saying: "When they go low, you go high."

Trump invited Bill Clinton’s accusers to sit in the first row: Paula Jones, who filed a sexual harassment suit against him in 1991; Juanita Broaddrick, who accused him of rape in 1978; and Kathleen Willey, a former White House aide who accused Bill Clinton of groping her in 1993.

Clinton was never charged in any of the incidents. He settled the sexual harassment suit with Jones for $850,000, with no apology or admission of guilt.

Also at the debate was Kathy Shelton, who was raped when she was 12 years old. Hillary Clinton, a practicing attorney at the time, defended the rapist who ultimately pleaded guilty to a reduced charge.

The invites came on the heels of a video released Friday that revealed an obscene 2005 conversation between Trump and former "Access Hollywood" host Billy Bush. Trump can be heard talking about a married woman in graphic terms, telling Bush that he "moved on her like a bitch."

"You know I’m automatically attracted to beautiful [women] -- I just start kissing them. It’s like a magnet. Just kiss. I don’t even wait. And when you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything -- grab them by the p---y. You can do anything.”

Trump initially released a statement on Friday, apologizing to anyone he offended, but added that "Bill Clinton has said far worse to me on the golf course." Hours later, shortly after midnight, he uploaded a video statement to his social media accounts and said he regretted the lewd remarks.

"I've never said I'm a perfect person, nor pretended to be someone that I'm not. ... I said it, I was wrong and I apologize," he said in the video.

But Trump continued to weigh in on the controversy surrounding his vulgar language, taking to Twitter on Saturday morning to write, "Certainly has been an interesting 24 hours!" Later that afternoon, he tweeted, "The media and establishment want me out of the race so badly -- I WILL NEVER DROP OUT OF THE RACE, WILL NEVER LET MY SUPPORTERS DOWN!"

He also appeared to address Republicans who condemned his lewd remarks, including some who withdrew support for the presidential nominee. "So many self-righteous hypocrites. Watch their poll numbers -- and elections -- go down!" he tweeted Sunday before the debate.

House Speaker Paul Ryan said in a statement Friday that he was "sickened" by Trump's remarks, adding that "women are to be championed and revered, not objectified." Former opponents spoke out, too, with John Kasich saying that "our country deserves better" and Jeb Bush calling the comments "reprehensible."

The 2005 remarks also prompted prominent Republicans to unendorse Trump, including Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) and Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.). 

Reactions on the left were swift, too, with Clinton tweeting, "This is horrific. We cannot allow this man to become president." 

Vice President Joe Biden tweeted, "The words are demeaning. Such behavior is an abuse of power. It's not lewd. It's sexual assault."

With Reuters