NATION POLITICS TRAIL GUIDE

Donald Trump greets protesters at Kansas City, Mo., rally

Donald Trump is grappling with the fallout from canceling a rally in Chicago over safety concerns.

  • Donald Trump rouses supporters at a raucous rally in Ohio, a day after protests in Chicago
  • How black, Latino and Muslim college students organized to stop Trump's rally
  • Marco Rubio laments that the GOP race has reached a "boiling point," blaming Trump
  • Hillary Clinton condemns Trump: His rhetoric is "political arson"
  • Clinton and Sen. Ted Cruz pick up delegates on Saturday

Donald Trump alleges man who rushed stage had terrorist ties

Donald Trump said Saturday night that the man who rushed the stage as he spoke earlier at an Ohio rally was probably “ISIS related” (using an acronym for Islamic State), but offered no evidence for the accusation.

At a raucous rally in Kansas City, Trump told supporters that he would have fought the man if Secret Service agents had not tackled him in a high-drama clash on stage at Trump's morning rally in Dayton.

The Republican presidential front-runner criticized an unnamed judge for releasing the suspect, identified by the Dayton Daily News as Thomas Dimassimo, 22, of Fairborn, Ohio.

“This guy should be in jail right now,” said Trump, who had grabbed his lectern and ducked when the man leaped over a barricade and dashed to within a few feet of the candidate.

Trump’s remarks came at a Kansas City rally marred by scores of protesters who left the candidate hollering “get 'em out” over and over for long stretches.

He threatened to start pressing charges against hecklers who disrupt virtually all of his rallies.

"You can arrest her," he said of one protester. "Arrest her. Arrest her. Arrest her."

Outside the rally, police arrested four protesters and pepper-sprayed others.

Trump’s allegation of Islamic State ties to his morning attacker appeared to be based on an altered Internet video that the New York billionaire spread on Twitter.

The original video showed a man who appeared to be Dimassimo participating in an anti-racism protest at Wright State University in Dayton.

The YouTube video that Trump posted on Twitter is an altered version with Middle Eastern music added as a soundtrack. Who made that version and whether the people in it had any knowledge of it are unknown.

“It was probably ISIS or ISIS related, do you believe it?” Trump told the crowd in Kansas City.

Rubio bashes Trump for provoking people to 'get angrier, get more frustrated'

 (Dan Anderson / EPA)
(Dan Anderson / EPA)

As Marco Rubio fights in Florida to keep his own presidential aspirations alive, he's pitching to supporters that something else is at stake in next Tuesday's primary: the conservative movement.

"I won't beat around the bush here. If Donald Trump is our nominee, we're going to lose," Rubio told a crowd of a several hundred people in Pensacola on Saturday evening. "And by the way, if Donald Trump is our nominee, he will define conservatism for a generation."

Hours after a morose Rubio said it was "getting harder every day" to pledge to support Trump if he were the GOP nominee, the Florida senator swiped at the front-runner for "going to Americans who are angry and who are frustrated and is telling them to get angrier and more frustrated." 

"That is not conservatism,” he added.

Though Rubio did not explicitly mention the melees at recent Trump rallies, he warned that U.S. political discourse should not become people who are "screaming, angry, calling each other names -- that’s what they do in third-world countries."

The Trump rally brawls were not just subtext in Rubio's remarks; many in the crowd said they were aware of the unrest at the GOP front-runner's events in Chicago and elsewhere.

"It's a shame that people can't get along," said Anne Haasnoot, a legal secretary from Pensacola.

Haasnoot said the Tuesday primary was "the most important one" for Rubio, and other attendees agreed.

"This is maybe the last stop," said Cathy Paulsen, a Pensacola real-estate agent. "This is it. If he doesn't break through here and finally win one, it's not going to happen."

But she said a loss on Tuesday, while decisive for Rubio's presidential ambitions this year, wouldn’t permanently dampen his career.

“He’s a rising star,” Paulsen said. “He’ll still do some great things, hopefully."

Ted Cruz wins delegates in Wyoming county conventions

 (Jim Cole / Associated Press)
(Jim Cole / Associated Press)

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz added to his delegate total on Saturday, grabbing a majority of delegates in Wyoming's GOP county conventions, one of a handful of contests being held this weekend.

Cruz won nine of the 12 delegates that were up for grabs, according to the state party. Republican front-runner Donald Trump and Florida Sen. Marco Rubio each won a single delegate in Wyoming, while one delegate was uncommitted. Next month another 14 of the Wyoming’s delegates will be awarded at the statewide convention.

On Saturday, Cruz also picked up a delegate in Guam, while, according to CNN and the Associated Press, the island’s remaining five delegates remained uncommitted.

Cruz is the lone candidate in the GOP field who has won several contests over Trump. Republican delegates in Washington, D.C., are also set to be awarded late Saturday evening.  

In final event of the day, Trump greets protesters

Donald Trump interrupted - again

Donald Trump's Kansas City, Mo., rally

Woman wants out of lawsuit against Trump University, but Trump's lawyers say no

 (Bebeto Matthews / Associated Press)
(Bebeto Matthews / Associated Press)

Lawyers for Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump on Friday contested an Orange County woman's request to withdraw from a lawsuit she filed against Trump University, saying the entire case was built around her and it would be unfair to the defense for her to bail out now.

"We've passed the point of no return," attorney Daniel Petrocelli told U.S. District Judge Gonzalo Curiel in San Diego.

Tarla Makaeff — one of four class representatives bringing the case against Trump's real estate instruction program — had asked to be removed from the lawsuit, citing stress and health problems caused by the closely watched case.

Here's what Marco Rubio is fighting for in Florida

 (Paul Sancya / Associated Press)
(Paul Sancya / Associated Press)

Sen. Marco Rubio is making a last stand in Florida that is as much about reigniting his once-hopeful presidential campaign as burnishing his own legacy after romping in the gutter with Donald Trump

Acknowledging he is the underdog now in his home state, Rubio was downcast Saturday as he took stock of the fractured condition of the GOP -- and his role in the messy fissure.

The violence that has erupted at Trump’s rallies left him doubting his own resolve when asked what has become the defining question for Republican leaders in the Trump era: Yes, he would still back the billionaire if he ended up the party’s nominee.

"Getting harder every day," Rubio sighed at an early morning campaign stop in the Tampa suburb of Largo. “I’m sad for this country.”

I committed at the outset, I will support the Republican nominee, whoever it is.

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, who is among Republicans who have criticized GOP presidential front-runner Donald Trump in recent days over unrest at his rallies, while speaking to reporters on Saturday

How black, Latino and Muslim college students organized to stop Trump's rally in Chicago

 (Charles Rex Arbogast/AP)
(Charles Rex Arbogast/AP)

When black, Muslim and Latino student activists at the University of Illinois at Chicago heard last week that Donald Trump was planning a rally on campus, they did what any good organizers do in 2016: They went online.

Within days, thousands of people had liked a Facebook page called "Stop Trump – Chicago." Tens of thousands added their names to a MoveOn.org petition calling on the school to cancel the rally.

They all had one thing in common, said Casandra Robledo, a second-year student who helped organize the protest: "We felt so strongly that Donald Trump and his bigotry and racism wasn’t welcome here.”

The students’ large demonstration at Trump's rally Friday night led the Republican presidential candidate to abruptly cancel his planned appearance and sparked a melee between Trump supporters and protesters that resulted in multiple injuries and arrests.

In Cleveland, Trump tries for normality, at least by his standards

Trying to wrench his campaign back to its version of normality after protests in Chicago forced cancellation of a rally there, Donald Trump went back to his usual pitch to Cleveland-area voters, one that was only occasionally drowned out by protesters and cries of support from Trump’s fans.

Inside a cavernous, airplane-hangar-style building near Cleveland's airport, Trump ran through his routine list of promises: to build a wall on the southern border, punish firms trying to move out of the country, to return education to local officials and draw up beneficial trade deals.

But first, he predicted that the chaotic events Friday night would help him politically.

“Yesterday in Chicago, we had a little bit of a problem,” he said. “We were not allowed to exercise our 1st Amendment rights.”

He blamed the protests on “a professional organization” and called the cancellation of his Chicago event “a terrible situation.”

But, he added, “it just makes all of our friends and supporters more angry and we’re going to go to the polls on Tuesday and it’ll be a resounding victory.”

The crowd roared, as they did several times when small groups of protesters tried to interrupt Trump.

Trump cast his campaign as a cause driven by the thousands in the hall, and the more than a million voters who have cast ballots for him.

“It’s not me, it’s you,” he said. “I’m a messenger. People are fed up with what’s going on, fed up with stupidity in Washington.”

As he does at every event, he scored American trade deals as “stupid” and said that he alone, among the candidates, would stand up for workers.

He took particular aim at Ohio Gov. John Kasich, Trump’s biggest competitor in Tuesday’s primary here. He pointed out that Kasich had voted as a congressman for the North American Free Trade Agreement, a deal much reviled in the industrial Midwest for taking away U.S. manufacturing jobs.

He criticized Kasich’s support for a path to legal status for those in the country illegally, and lanced him for his past work for at the Lehman Bros. investment firm. He said Kasich had abandoned the state for long periods while seeking the presidency.

“Your governor let the coal industry down,” he said. “Your steel industry is going to hell .… We’re bringing it all back. All these things are coming back, folks.”

When he was interrupted by protesters, Trump invariably described them as “Bernie people” — meaning loyal to Democratic candidate Bernie Sanders.

“Oh, boy, wouldn’t it be fun to meet Bernie in the finals?” he said at one point, referring to the November election.

Then, he added, “Get 'em the hell out.”

He spared no praise for Sanders’ rival, Hillary Clinton, suggesting that her supporters were too uninterested to protest. He also noted that he had heard that after the Chicago troubles that Clinton had said Trump needed to “speak to his people so they’re nonviolent.”

“My people aren’t violent,” he said. “My people want to do one thing: Make America great again.”

Video shows man rushing Donald Trump at Ohio event

New video posted online shows a clearer view of the man who jumped a barrier at a Donald Trump campaign rally and tried to rush the stage where the Republican front-runner was speaking Saturday morning in Vandalia, Ohio. 

Trump appeared rattled, spinning around to watch Secret Service agents swarm the man and stop his charge. 

The man was led out of the event and Trump gave the cheering crowd a thumbs up. 

"I was ready for him, but it's much easier if the cops do it," Trump said. 

The encounter came in Trump's first campaign appearance after massive protests led him to cancel a rally Friday in Chicago. 

Analysis: After scuffles in Chicago, Trump tells supporters he can unite the country. It's a hard sell

A day after fistfights and shoving broke out at his planned event in Chicago, Donald Trump on Saturday blamed the violence on opponents who “taunted” and harassed his supporters, and he continued to pledge that he would unify the country.

The events of the night before had conjured a horrible flashback to the 1960s, when police and protesters fought in the streets of the same city during the Democratic National Convention in 1968. Thousands who had gathered for his appearance began scuffling after it was canceled, and then some continued the conflict outside.

Nothing about it was surprising: A flammable brew of populist anger, campaign mismanagement, a candidate’s own provocative encouragement and disruptive protesters finally found its fuse. The explosion was predictable, given tensions in the country around its changing demographic face and economic displacement that has left many fearful and upset and receptive audiences for Trump’s surprisingly strong candidacy.

In his first appearance Saturday outside Dayton, Ohio, Trump said the Friday problems arose when “all of a sudden a planned attack just came out of nowhere.”

“My people are nice … they caused no problem,” he said. “They were taunted, they were harassed by these other people.”

He repeated that message in Cleveland, where a raucous crowd greeted him and booed scattered groups of protesters.



Hillary Clinton to announce new proposal on trade rules

A Jeep Cherokee at an assembly plant in Toledo, Ohio. (Jeff Kowalsky / Bloomberg)
A Jeep Cherokee at an assembly plant in Toledo, Ohio. (Jeff Kowalsky / Bloomberg)

With international trade a persistent fault line in the presidential election, Hillary Clinton is announcing a new proposal to strengthen protections for U.S. car manufacturers. 

The proposal involves what Clinton calls weak "rules of origin," which set standards for where products need to be made in order to qualify for lower tariffs under trade agreements.

Under the massive Trans-Pacific Partnership deal, only 45% of a car would need to be produced inside countries that signed the agreement to qualify for inclusion, a level that Clinton believes is too low and opens the door to unfair competition with cheap materials from China. 

She plans to announce her proposal at a campaign stop in Youngstown, Ohio.

Her rival for the Democratic nomination, Bernie Sanders, has repeatedly criticized Clinton for supporting trade policies that he says have cost manufacturing jobs.

After narrowly winning this week’s primary in Michigan, Sanders is hoping the message works again for him in Midwestern states like Ohio and Illinois on Tuesday.

Hillary Clinton and Ted Cruz pick up delegates in Northern Mariana Islands and Guam

 (Matt Rourke / Associated Press)
(Matt Rourke / Associated Press)

Hillary Clinton and Ted Cruz won a small number of delegates on Saturday in presidential nominating contests in the Northern Mariana Islands and Guam. 

Clinton, the front-runner to be the Democratic nominee, nabbed four delegates with her win in the Northern Mariana Islands' first-ever Democratic-caucuses, while Bernie Sanders earned two delegates, according to the local party. Republicans did not hold contests in the Pacific Ocean territory. 

Meanwhile, Cruz picked up a delegate in Guam, while, according to CNN and the Associated Press, the remaining five delegates are uncommitted. Democrats will hold their contest in Guam in May. 

Cruz is the lone candidate in the GOP field who has won several contests over Trump. 

Republican delegates in Washington, D.C., were also to be doled out later Saturday. 

Bernie Sanders says Donald Trump -- not the Sanders campaign -- is to blame for mass protests

In a sharply worded statement, Bernie Sanders denied accusations from Donald Trump that Sanders' campaign was involved in organizing protesters who showed up en masse at a Trump rally in Chicago on Friday night. 

“As is the case virtually every day, Donald Trump is showing the American people that he is a pathological liar," Sanders said of Trump's claim on Twitter that it was "Clinton and Sanders people" who disrupted his rally. 

"Obviously, while I appreciate that we had supporters at Trump’s rally in Chicago, our campaign did not organize the protests," Sanders said.

According to protesters who were at the event, the demonstration was largely organized by student activists at the University of Illinois at Chicago, whose campus was the site of the arena where Trump was slated to speak Friday night. 

But the campus activists were also joined by protesters from other local and national groups, including Black Lives Matter and MoveOn.Org, a group that has endorsed Sanders and printed signs and a banner for the protest. 

Nick Berning, communications director at MoveOn.Org, said his group sent an email blast to its members in Chicago, asking them to join the protest. 

But while many of MoveOn members back Sanders, the group did not work directly with the campaign, Berning said. 

In his statement, Sanders said Trump himself was to blame for the demonstration. 

“What caused the protests at Trump’s rally is a candidate that has promoted hatred and division against Latinos, Muslims, women, and people with disabilities, and his birther attacks against the legitimacy of President Obama," he said. 

"What caused the violence at Trump’s rally is a campaign whose words and actions have encouraged it on the part of his supporters," Sanders said. "When that is what the Trump campaign is doing, we should not be surprised that there is a response."

Trump the butt of many jokes at South by Southwest

As the interactive portion of the annual confab gets going in Austin, Texas, there has been plenty of anti-Donald Trump material on display.

Video recap: Donald Trump rallies in Cleveland

Start of Donald Trump's second rally of the day disrupted by more protests

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