WASHINGTON—Expressing relief that the leaked recording of his meeting with lawyer Michael Cohen revealed more than merely his practice of paying hush money to his mistresses, President Donald Trump told the reporters Thursday that he felt “vindicated” by the captured conversation, during which he clearly and unequivocally demonstrated his yearning for reconciliation between the races, called for an earnest and compassionate ongoing dialogue among those of different faiths, and unequivocally condemned the rampant gender inequality at all levels of American society. “Sure, it might look like I’m only concerned with silencing a Playmate in exchange for a large sum of money, but that’s only because the crooked media edited out my call for Americans of all colors, creeds, and convictions to finally come together as one people and embrace the differences that are ultimately our chief source of strength, instead of using them to sow further discord,” said the 45th president of the United States, citing a section at the recording’s 12-minute mark where he was heard challenging his “brothers and sisters in democracy” to work together and uplift traditionally marginalized groups. “This is far from the first time my words have been taken out of context. Yet this incident only serves to strengthen my resolve. My message was clear then, and it’s clear today: We cannot move forward as a nation unless and until we atone for generations of systemic oppression by committing all our resources to opposing that oppression in all its forms, because the only true measure of a society is in its treatment of its most vulnerable members.” At press time, a Pew Research Center poll showed Trump’s approval rating plummeting to 1 percent among Republicans.

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