Trump opens up about failed marriages; says he's 'never had a drink' of alcohol

by Michael Foust |

(REUTERS/Gary Cameron)Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump autographs the chest of a woman at his campaign rally in Manassas, Virginia December 2, 2015.

COLUMBIA, S.C. (Christian Examiner) – Viewers of CNN's Republican town hall Thursday night got to see a more personal side of presidential candidate Donald Trump, who seemed to express regret for two failed marriages and who also explained why he doesn't drink alcohol.

The one-on-one format of the town hall – hosted by Anderson Cooper -- was far more civilized and less combative than the presidential debates, with audience members asking questions.

During the closing moments of the interview, Cooper asked Trump to name "one thing" he wished he hadn't done in life.

"Maybe I work too hard. ... I'm a worker," Trump said. "... I'm a workaholic, but I don't consider that a bad thing."

Trump then mentioned his two previous marriages.

"I have a very good marriage now. Melania is fantastic. But I had two women that I never blamed [for the divorces] because I worked so hard that my job came first. [It] never came first with my children. ... I was a better father than I was a husband."

Trump then added, "Not that I would change anything, but if I did [work] a little bit less, I probably wouldn't have had two marriages that didn't work out."

The businessman also explained why he is a teetotaler. His brother Fred, he said, was an incredibly talented person whose life was ruined by alcohol.

"It taught me a tremendous lesson. ... He said, 'Don't you ever smoke. Don't you ever drink.' ... And I've never had a drink and I've never had a cigarette. Those are the good things [about me]. I don't want to tell you the bad things," Trump said.

Trump also mentioned a friend, from his late teen years, who became an alcoholic.

"He became quite successful [and] lost his success because of alcohol. I've seen what it does to people. It's a horror show. And the one thing I can say is that if you don't drink, there's no temptation," Trump said.

Trump said he told his children repeatedly: "No drugs, no alcohol, no cigarettes."