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Patriots player skipped White House event because of Trump comments

New England Patriots defensive tackle Alan Branch said President Donald Trump's past comments about women kept him from attending the White House event for the Super Bowl champions. (Image Source: Twitter Video screen cap)

Super Bowl champion defensive tackle Alan Branch says that he couldn't look his daughters in the eye after tacitly approving what President Donald Trump said in a now infamous recording about women released just before the presidential election. He explained his thoughts to Don Lemon on CNN Wednesday.

The New England Patriots met with the president at the White House Wednesday, but several players objected to the trip on personal grounds. Quarterback Tom Brady skipped it too, but because he wanted to be with his sick mother.

"It was a personal matter," Branch said.Β "You know what President Trump said on the bus really struck a nerve with me. I'm a father of three daughters and I have a son as well and like I can't see myself having any type of interest to go meet this person that said such horrible things.

"And I have a baby boy not even a year old yet," Branch continued. "And I don't want him to grow up to think that, saying stuff like that is all right at any point in his life. So I have no interest in meeting the guy. And I hope he does a great job. You know, I'm an American at the end of the day, so I hope he does well. But I just don't believe in any of the locker room talk that he said, or anything like that, it just struck a nerve with me."

Branch was referring to taped comments of Trump saying that he was so famous that women would let him grab their genitals. He apologized later on the eve of the election for the comments.

Lemon asked Branch if he had ever heard "locker room talk" β€”Β the excuse Trump used for his comments.

"I've been in the NFL for a whole decade," Branch answered, "and played in college football all my life and you know, I've never heard anyone talk like that, so aggressively, and you know, disrespectfully about women, or towards women at all. And, maybe it happened in a different locker room, but you know anyone who has respect for their parents, their mom, sisters, daughters, would stop that. Because if anyone said anything close to that near me, I'm shutting that down right now, so, I mean, I just, it's just disgusting the way he talks about women. I just, I can't deal with it."

"And that's why I have no interest in going and shaking his hand," he concluded. "I gotta go back home and look my daughters in the eye, and I don't want them to view me in a different light, just because I did that."

The Patriots won Super Bowl 51 in one of the greatest comebacks in football history after an enormous deficit in the Atlanta Falcons' favor. Some compared the incredible comeback to Trump's defeat of Hillary Clinton.

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