Donald Trump denied he ever posed as a media spokesman to conduct phone interviews with reporters, calling the release of audio of what sounds like him doing so “one of the many scams” used against him.
“No, I don’t know anything about it. You’re telling me about it for the first time and it doesn’t sound like my voice at all,” he told TODAY Friday about a Washington Post article saying Trump gave interviews while posing as a spokesman, sometimes named John Miller and at other times, John Barron.
“I have many, many people that are trying to imitate my voice and you can imagine that. This sounds like one of these scams, one of the many scams. It doesn’t sound like me,” he said.
The Post article said Trump acknowledged he used to pose as someone else routinely and released a 25-year-old audio of such a conversation.
“It was not me on the phone. And it doesn’t sound like me on the phone, I will tell you that. It was not me on the phone,” he insisted before cutting off the issue. “Let’s go on to more current subjects.”
Trump also addressed plans by the Obama administration plans to issue a sweeping directive requiring every public school district to allow transgender students to use the bathrooms that match their gender identity.
During a town hall in April on the TODAY Plaza, Trump addressed the North Carolina law, saying he would have left things as they were because “there have been very few complaints the way it is.”
On Friday, he said he would leave the issue up to states to decide.
“Let the states decide. I think it’s much better as a local issue. I don’t think it’s a federal issue where the federal government gets involved. And I see what’s happening. It’s become such a big situation,” he said.
“Everybody has to be protected and I feel strongly about that but you’re talking about a tiny, tiny group of population,” he added.
The White House decree comes as the administration and North Carolina battle in federal court over a state law passed earlier this year that prohibits public bathroom access for transgender people.
Trump also discussed his high-profile meeting Thursday with House Speaker Paul Ryan, saying he was “a little bit surprised” it concluded without an endorsement, but said “it’s a process.”
The two Republicans met at party headquarters to smooth out their differences and each said they were working together to find a common path to defeat the Democratic nominee in November, but Ryan stopped short of making an endorsement.
“I think that will come, and if it doesn’t come, I’ll go my separate way. I think I’ll win the election,” Trump said.
He also met with other Republican leaders in Washington, including Ohio Sen. Rob Portman, who former Vice President Dan Quayle told TODAY should be Trump’s running mate.
Trump spoke with Portman, as well as with “a whole bunch of senators” and other Republican leaders on Thursday.
“Rob Portman is a good man. There’s no question about it,” Trump said, but he refused to name who he is considering as a running mate.
“I’m not going to say who’s on the list, and I have a list of about five or six and possibly expanding,” he said. “I’ll make the decision by the convention and probably announce it during the convention.”
This story originally appeared on TODAY.com