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 / Updated  / Source: TODAY
By Eun Kyung Kim

Donald Trump tells TODAY's Savannah Guthrie that his controversial comments about Fox News' Megyn Kelly were not intended "to be much of an insult."

"If I had said that, it would have been inappropriate," Trump explained in a phone interview, saying he was not suggesting the female journalist was hormonal.

Earlier, Trump derided Kelly's job as a moderator and said, “You could see there was blood coming out of her eyes, blood coming out of her — whatever.”

Trump said it wasn’t a reference to menstruation, as many have alleged.

"I didn’t even finish the answer, because I wanted to get on the next point. If I finished it, I was going to say ears or nose, because that’s just a common statement — blood is pouring out of your ears," he said.

Despite the outrage he may have sparked for some, the real estate mogul continues to rank high among potential voters. Yet, the comments cost him a spot at last weekend’s RedState Gathering, a conservative event featuring Republican presidential candidates.

After his invitation to speak at the Atlanta event was pulled, Trump responded with a tweet, saying “political correctness is killing our country.”

On TODAY, Trump said his political opponents have benefitted from his presence in the presidential race and especially at last week's debate, which attracted a record 24 million viewers.

"If I wasn't on the show, they would have had two million people watching," Trump said. "The other candidates are very lucky because at least people are watching what they're saying as opposed to nobody caring."

Follow TODAY.com writer Eun Kyung Kim on Twitter.