Donald Trump said Thursday he regrets some of the remarks he has made while running for president, making a surprising concession in his first speech after a big campaign shakeup.
“I regret it,” the Republican nominee told a crowd in North Carolina.
“Sometimes, in the heat of debate and speaking on a multitude of issues, you don’t choose the right words or you say the wrong thing. I have done that,” he said, drawing a chuckle from the crowd. “And believe it or not, I regret it. And I do regret it, particularly when it may have caused personal pain. Too much is at stake for us to be consumed with personal issues.”
Trump didn’t specify what “wrong things” he regretted saying, but there are many possibilities. He’s repeatedly drawn fire for levying intensely personal attacks on figures like Judge Gonzalo Curiel, who is overseeing the Trump University lawsuit, and Khizr Khan, a Muslim who condemned Trump at the Democratic National Convention.
Trump did, however, stop short of actually apologizing for any of his rhetoric.
His concession comes in his first speech since shaking up his campaign by hiring Breitbart News executive Steve Bannon as his campaign CEO. Trump has been fairing poorly in the polls since the end of the Democratic convention, with most polls showing him well behind in swing states critical for winning the election.
The speech could represent a strategic shift by Trump towards using more conciliatory language than in the past.
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