Clinton, Trump pull no punches in town hall debate

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump shakes hands with Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton following the second presidential debate at Washington University in St. Louis, Sunday, Oct. 9, 2016. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

ST. LOUIS, MO (WPRI) — Presidential nominees Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump pulled no punches in their second televised debate on Sunday evening.

The town hall-style forum included questions from a pre-selected group of undecided voters. After an audience question about the candidate’s conduct at their first televised debate, moderators Anderson Cooper of CNN and Martha Raddatz of ABC launched into questions about lewd remarks Trump made regarding women in an 11-year-old video released this weekend.

In the tape Trump use sexually explicit language and profanities to talk about kissing women and grabbing their genitals.

“It was locker room talk,” said Trump. “I’m not proud of it.”

Cooper pressed Trump to confirm or deny whether he had acted upon any of the things he discussed doing in the 2005 recording. Trump said he had not.

“If you look at Bill Clinton, far worse,” said Trump. “Mine are words. His are actions.”

Clinton responded by quoting the current first lady.

“When I hear something like that, I’m reminded of what my friend Michelle Obama advised us all: when they go low, you go high,” she said.

The debate came 90 minutes after Donald Trump held a surprise news conference with women who accused former president Bill Clinton of sexual harassment and assault. Those women later sat in the front row of the debate.

Q&A: Eyewitness News Political Analyst Joe Fleming discusses debate »
Q&A: Eyewitness News Political Analyst Joe Fleming discusses debate »

The tension between Clinton and Trump was palpable. The pair neglected to shake hands at the start of the debate.

“It’s just awfully good that someone with the temperament of Donald Trump is not in charge of the law in our country,” said Clinton.

Trump fired back. “Because you’d be in jail,” he said, referencing Clinton’s email scandal.

The pair contentiously sparred over topics ranging from Syria to the divides within America, with Cooper and Raddatz interrupting them dozens of times.

Despite the tension, the pair ended the debate amicably after a voter asked them to say something nice about one another.

Clinton said she respects Trump’s children, while Trump said he respects how Clinton fights for what she believes in. Although they did not begin with a handshake, the pair did shake hands at the conclusion of their 90 minute debate.

With reports from the Associated Press.