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Carl Icahn: I'm still with Trump; 'salacious' talk happens everywhere

Carl Icahn speaking at Delivering Alpha in New York on Sept. 13, 2016.
David A. Grogan | CNBC
Carl Icahn speaking at Delivering Alpha in New York on Sept. 13, 2016.

Amid an exodus of other high-profile supporters, Donald Trump is keeping one key ally in his corner.

Billionaire investor Carl Icahn said Monday he is holding ranks with the Republican presidential nominee, despite revelations in recent days that Trump made more disparaging comments about women in the past.

"Over my years I've listened to a lot of salacious talk in locker rooms, bachelor parties, et cetera, by a lot of high-level people, some of whom are now supposedly so outraged," Icahn told CNBC.com in a phone interview. "All I can do is refer to that great quote, 'Let he who has not sinned cast the first stone.'"

Trump is under fire after a video surfaced from 2005 in which he made comments criticized as endorsing sexual violence. He described walking up to women and kissing them and grabbing their genitalia.

Since the video surfaced, a slew of supporters have ditched the candidate. Key congressional Republicans including Arizona Sen. John McCain, himself a presidential nominee in 2008, have withdrawn their endorsements, with former GE CEO Jack Welch joining them. House Speaker Paul Ryan, the vice presidential nominee in 2012, told his colleagues Monday that he is done defending Trump and is now focusing on maintaining congressional majorities for his party.

Trump has since apologized, also using the "locker room" analogy to explain the scenario that led to the remarks.

Icahn said he remains a Trump backer despite the firestorm.

"It's amazing that everyone is outraged by something that everyone knows is going on in every locker room in the country," Icahn said.

Trump has mentioned Icahn as a potential treasury secretary, though Icahn has said he isn't interested.

Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton engaged in a raucous debate Sunday night in which Clinton blasted Trump over the remarks. He retorted that former President Bill Clinton was guilty himself of inappropriate sexual behavior.

Most importantly, Icahn said Trump is the clear candidate for business.

"I thought Donald made a number of great points in the debate last night," he said. "Today it is perceived that government is at war with business. This perception must be changed, and it is certainly not being changed by Hillary Clinton.

"It is imperative that many changes in Washington must be made," he said. "I am therefore still obviously behind Donald Trump."

Correction: This story was revised to correct in one reference that Icahn, not Trump, spoke with CNBC.com.