Vanderpump Rules star Tom Sandoval is in hot water after he compared his Scandoval-deemed cheating scandal to O.J. Simpson’s trial of the century and George Floyd’s history-altering death.

“I’m not a pop-culture historian really,” Tom, 40, said during a New York Times interview published on Tuesday, February 20, after being asked why he thought his affair with Rachel Leviss and breakup with Ariana Madix became a nationwide scandal. “But I witnessed the O.J. Simpson thing and George Floyd and all these big things, which is really weird to compare this to that, I think, but do you think in a weird way it’s a little bit the same?”

The reality star’s comparison of infidelity to social, racial and legal issues of immense magnitude was questionable, which led reporter Irina Aleksander to add context to the published story.

“I think I knew what he meant,” she wrote. “He was trying to express the oddity of becoming the symbolic center of a nationwide discussion and a major news story; what he communicated instead was something more honest, which is just how much the experience had made him lose perspective.”

The reporter also shared in the piece that “a Bravo publicist rang” her phone to gain clarity on Tom’s tone-deaf comments.

“Some of what Sandoval had said had gotten back to Bravo, and everyone was concerned,” she wrote. “What was it that he said about O.J. Simpson and George Floyd exactly?”

The TomTom co-owner later apologized for the analogy he used in his NYT profile piece.

“My intentions behind the comments I made in New York Times Magazine were to explain the level of national media attention my affair received,” Tom told In Touch in a statement. “The comparison was inappropriate and ignorant. I’m incredibly sorry and embarrassed.”

In Touch confirmed on March 3, 2023, that Tom and Ariana, 38, broke up after nine years together after she found out about his seven-month-long affair with Rachel, 29. “The rumor is true — they, in fact, broke up due to Tom cheating on her with Raquel,” a source close to Ariana told Life & Style at the time.

Tom faced public scrutiny while Ariana landed major brand deals and film opportunities. Rachel, for her part, did not return to Vanderpump Rules for season 11.

George Floyd was a 46-year-old Black man who died on May 25, 2020. He was arrested for allegedly making a purchase with a counterfeit $20 bill and white Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin handcuffed him and forcefully pinned him down to the ground until his last breath. Two years later, ​Chauvin was sentenced to 21 years in prison for violating Floyd’s civil rights. He was stabbed 22 times in prison in November 2023 but survived the attack.

O.J. Simpson was an All-America football star who was accused of the June 12, 1994, murders of his ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her friend Ronald Goodman. The disgraced athlete, 76, attempted to flee his home using his friend A.C. Cowlings’ vehicle, which led to a televised high-speed police pursuit that gained over 95 million viewers. O.J. pleaded not guilty to two counts of first-degree murder on January 24, 1995, and was found not guilty on October 2, 1995. Nicole and Ron’s families sued O.J. the following year in a civil suit for wrongful death and they were rewarded $33.5 million in damages. However, O.J. didn’t have the funds to pay the fine.

Tom Sandoval Compares Scandoval to George Floyd and O.J. Simpson
Betches by Bravo/ Instagram

Tom’s Vanderpump Rules costars caught wind of his recent comments and publicly slammed him online.

“The ​f–k?” Katie Maloney wrote in the comments section of @bravobybetches Instagram account who reshared Tom’s quote. “Sorry for the curse word but I have no other words.”

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