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Hillary Clinton clinches Democratic presidential nomination, AP says

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Hillary Clinton clinches the Democratic presidential nomination, according to the Associated Press

What nomination? Neither Clinton nor Sanders seems interested in her history-making moment

It was the biggest news of the Democratic primary season: The Associated Press declared Monday that Hillary Clinton had clinched the party’s nomination, becoming the first woman in U.S. history to claim the mantle of major-party nominee.

But neither she nor rival Bernie Sanders seemed much interested in acknowledging it.

Clinton briefly referred to the AP count Monday at a rally in Long Beach but downplayed its significance ahead of Tuesday’s spate of primaries, including California’s.

“According to the news, we are on the brink of a historic, historic, unprecedented moment. But we still have work to do, don’t we?” Clinton told several hundred cheering supporters in a college gym in Long Beach. “We have six elections tomorrow and we’re going to fight hard for every single vote, especially right here in California.”

She didn’t bother mentioning the development at all during a fundraising concert later at the Greek Theatre in Los Angeles.

And at Sanders’ rally in San Francisco on Monday night, it was as though the call was never made.

Sanders did not once cite the AP’s report — later echoed by NBC and CNN — during a 45-minute speech. Instead, he stuck with familiar themes such as income inequality, swiped at Donald Trump for his “bigotry” and contrasted himself with Clinton on issues including the minimum wage, fracking and the use of super PACs.

Above all, he insisted that Tuesday’s primary in California would be pivotal.

“Tomorrow, as you all know, there is a very important primary here in this beautiful state,” Sanders said, standing in San Francisco’s Crissy Field with the Golden Gate Bridge cloaked in fog in the background. “This is the most important primary that we have had in the entire Democratic nominating process.”

Neither candidate wants the perception of a settled contest to muffle their supporters’ turnout Tuesday in California’s close race.

A loss for Clinton in the state with the most delegates at stake in the primary season would be an embarrassing end to the spring campaign. And for Sanders, a win here would strengthen his influence over the party platform to be decided at the Democratic National Convention next month.

Sanders said his chances in California hinged on turnout, insisting he will win if the number of ballots cast is high.

“Our job is tomorrow to make certain that here in California, we have the largest voter turnout of any Democratic primary in the history of the state,” he said.

Attendees at his rally, where the Dave Matthews Band performed and campaign surrogates including Ohio state Sen. Nina Turner warmed up the crowd, said they saw no need for Sanders to weigh in on today’s development.

“Why dampen the crowd?” said Joe Merer, 58, an IT specialist from San Francisco.

Merer said he had expected Clinton would be declared the presumptive nominee Tuesday.

Still, he said, he hoped Sanders would not concede.

“There’s no reason for him to bow down,” Merer said, adding it would be “really, really hard” to vote for Clinton in November.

“I don’t like being held hostage,” he said.

Philip Dinolfo, 24, sounded more open to vote for Clinton in a general election, saying she did not pose the existential threat to the country that he believes Donald Trump does.

But he predicted that AP’s call for Clinton on Monday would affect turnout Tuesday.

“All of us here are fairly loyal to Bernie Sanders,” Dinolfo said. “But for other Democrats or independents who may be on the fence, there may be a certain realization: Why vote your conscience when you can vote for the winner?”

Times staff writers Seema Mehta in Long Beach and Kate Linthicum in Los Angeles contributed to this report.

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Clinton clinches Democratic nomination, making history on eve of California primary

Racing from close quarters to mass rallies, Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders churned across California on Monday as the former secretary of State made history — becoming the first woman ever to clinch a major party’s presidential nomination.

The Associated Press, which closely tracks the delegate count, said late Monday that enough of the uncommitted had swung behind Clinton to give her the nomination.

She declined to claim the prize, however, so as not to dampen Tuesday’s turnout.

“According to the news, we are on the brink of a historic, historic, unprecedented moment, but we still have work to do, don’t we?” a beaming Clinton told supporters at a boisterous rally in a basketball gym at Long Beach City College. “We have six elections tomorrow and we’re going to fight for every single vote, especially right here in California.”

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Clinton money email uses images labeled ‘secret win’

Hillary Clinton was careful not to claim victory ahead of all the contests Tuesday after the Associated Press declared her to have clinched the needed number of delegates to be the Democratic nominee.

But her campaign sent out a fundraising email to capitalize on the historic moment. It thanks supporters, but adds that the primary “isn’t (quite) over” and urges people to “show Hillary that you have her back.”

The images in the email were labeled “secret win.”

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Clinton clinches Democratic nomination, making history on eve of California primary

Racing from close quarters to mass rallies, Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders churned across California on Monday as the former secretary of State made history — becoming the first woman ever to clinch a major party’s presidential nomination.

The Associated Press, which closely tracks the delegate count, said late Monday that enough of the uncommitted had swung behind Clinton to give her the nomination.

She declined to claim the prize, however, so as not to dampen Tuesday’s turnout.

“According to the news, we are on the brink of a historic, historic, unprecedented moment, but we still have work to do, don’t we?” a beaming Clinton told supporters at a boisterous rally in a basketball gym at Long Beach City College. “We have six elections tomorrow and we’re going to fight for every single vote, especially right here in California.”

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Scene at Bernie Sanders rally in San Francisco

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A beaming Clinton downplays news that she clinched nomination

Shortly after several media outlets declared her the presumptive Democratic nominee for president, a beaming Hillary Clinton acknowledged the historic development Monday but downplayed it ahead of Tuesday’s spate of primaries.

“According to the news we are on the brink of a historic, historic, unprecedented moment. But we still have work to do, don’t we?” Clinton told several hundred cheering supporters in a college gym here. “We have six elections tomorrow and we’re going to fight hard for every single vote, especially right here in California.”

Clinton stuck to the same stump speech she delivered earlier in the day in Lynwood and Leimart Park, outlining her domestic agenda and castigating presumptive GOP nominee Donald Trump as unfit for office.

But as she reached the conclusion, her voice grew louder and emotional as she urged the crowd to vote and vowed to represent them.

“I can’t do any of this without your help. I need you to turn out tomorrow, get everybody you can to go vote tomorrow. Make a very clear statement: We are repudiating Donald Trump; we are getting ready for the fall election; we are going to defeat him,” Clinton said. “If you will vote for me, I will work for you, I will fight for you, and together we will create the future America deserves.”

Clinton was widely expected to clinch the nomination before the polls close in California on Tuesday, but a loss here, in the primary with more delegates at stake than any other, would be an embarrassment. All day, the candidate and her top supporters campaigning for her pounded the message that even if Clinton appeared to have sewn up the nomination, it was crucial for her supporters to vote.

Though Clinton was restrained after the news broke, some of her supporters who have been campaigning with her throughout her five-day California swing were not.

“It’s fantastic news. It’s time to unite the Democratic Party,” said state Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de León in an interview after the rally. “It’s time for Bernie Sanders to bring this to a halt and help unite this party so we can move forward with the wind behind our sails to make sure we defeat the most dangerous presidential candidate in modern political history.”

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Spokesman for Bernie Sanders criticizes ‘rush to judgment’ on Democratic nomination

Shortly after the Associated Press reported Monday that Hillary Clinton has secured enough delegates to claim the Democratic presidential nomination, a spokesman for rival Bernie Sanders accused the media of a “rush to judgment.”

The spokesman, Michael Briggs, said Clinton hasn’t secured the nomination because superdelegates, party leaders who can choose whom to support, won’t vote until the convention in July.

“Our job from now until the convention is to convince those superdelegates that Bernie is by far the strongest candidate against Donald Trump,” Briggs said in a statement.

But it’s unlikely that Sanders will be able to sway superdelegates to his side, because Clinton has won more votes, more states and more pledged delegates.

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Hillary Clinton’s immediate response to AP: Tuesday is the real clinching moment

How unusual is this year’s presidential race? Hillary Clinton’s campaign seems reluctant to accept the mantle of presumptive nominee.

Just moments after the Associated Press, followed quickly by other news organizations, updated their delegate counts to put Clinton over the threshold to become the nominee, campaign manager Robby Mook said in a statement that the key moment will actually come Tuesday. That’s when, he said, the former secretary of State “will clinch not only a win in the popular vote, but also the majority of pledged delegates.”

“This is an important milestone, but there are six states that are voting Tuesday, with millions of people heading to the polls, and Hillary Clinton is working to earn every vote,” he said.

The AP’s assessment threatens to steal a little thunder from the moment the campaign had been building toward Tuesday: a prime-time speech by Clinton after the results from New Jersey’s primary were expected to give her the 2,383 delegates necessary to secure the nod.

It also represents a potential last-minute complication to both campaigns’ get-out-the-vote efforts in the six states voting Tuesday, including the biggest prize among them: California.

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Awaiting Hillary Clinton’s first appearance since she sealed the Democratic nomination

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Hillary Clinton clinches Democratic nomination in a historic first

Hillary Clinton in Salinas, Calif., last month.
(John Locher / Associated Press)

Hillary Clinton has secured enough delegates to claim the Democratic presidential nomination, the Associated Press said Monday night, making her poised to become the first female candidate from a major party for the White House in U.S. history.

A victory in Puerto Rico’s primary on Sunday and additional pledges of support from superdelegates helped Clinton cross the threshold, a day ahead of California’s primary and almost exactly eight years since conceding her first presidential campaign in disappointment.

Since then she’s carefully laid the groundwork for another shot at the White House, including serving four years as secretary of State under President Obama. Now she’s girding for a bruising general election battle with Donald Trump, the presumptive Republican nominee.

Clinton’s delegate total includes pledged delegates and superdelegates, who are party leaders and elected officials who can decide which candidate to support at the Democratic National Convention in July.

She is beating Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, her rival for the nomination, in both categories.

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Associated Press says Hillary Clinton has enough delegates to clinch nomination

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Hillary Clinton’s fundraiser at Greek Theatre takes on the air of a celebration

(Barbara Davidson / Los Angeles Times)

Hillary Clinton’s star-studded fundraiser at the Greek Theatre started to feel more like a celebration Monday after the Associated Press and other news outlets declared that Clinton had enough delegates to clinch the Democratic presidential nomination.

When singer John Legend mentioned the news in the middle of a several-song set, the crowd erupted in wild cheers. “I don’t care what the AP says about who won the nomination,” Legend said. “We need everybody to vote tomorrow.”

Other musicians performing at the concert include Stevie Wonder, Ricky Martin and Christina Aguilera. Cher, Magic Johnson and Shonda Rhimes are also scheduled to speak.

Several other speakers spent their time onstage eviscerating Donald Trump, Clinton’s likely opponent in the November general election.

“I’m a ninth-generation American,” said actress Eva Longoria. “But I’m sure Trump will tell you otherwise.”

She was referencing Trump’s recent attacks on a Mexican American judge.

Model Chrissy Teigen, Legend’s wife, drew laughter when she took aim at Trump’s comments that Clinton has prevailed politicially because she is playing the “woman’s card.”

“This woman card has been awesome,” she said. “It’s been so good at getting us equal pay.”

Clinton’s rival, Bernie Sanders, hosted his own concert in San Francisco on Monday night featuring musician Dave Matthews and celebrities including Shailene Woodley and Danny Glover.

His campaign has criticized journalists for calling the nomination for Clinton ahead of Tuesday’s primaries in California and elsewhere.

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Scorching TV ad targets Trump for mocking reporter’s disability

A group that backs Hillary Clinton is expanding its scathing assault against Donald Trump in battleground states with a new ad highlighting his mocking of a reporter with a disability.

The emotionally charged ad features an Ohio couple, Chris and Lauren Glaros, talking about raising a toddler with spina bifida.

“The children at Grace’s school all know never to mock her, and so for an adult to mock a person with a disability is shocking,” Lauren Glaros says.

The one-minute spot shows the Republican presidential hopeful waving his arms, widening his eyes and speaking in a weird voice.

“You ought to see this guy,” Trump says of New York Times reporter Serge Kovaleski, whose arthrogryposis impairs his arm movements.

Trump denied he was mocking Kovaleski, who met the businessman about a dozen times when he covered his career in the 1980s.

Chris Glaros, whose daughter is shown smiling in a wheelchair, says the incident exposed Trump’s soul. “It showed me his heart, and I didn’t like what I saw,” he says.

The ad is the third one aired by Priorities USA Action, a super PAC backing Clinton, Trump’s likely Democratic rival. The previous two highlighted Trump’s attitudes toward women, including such derogatory remarks as, “A person that is flat-chested is very hard to be a 10.”

Those spots ran in Ohio, Florida, Virginia and Nevada. The new one will run in those states, and in Iowa, New Hampshire and Colorado, the group said. By the time the GOP convention in Cleveland starts in six weeks, Priorities USA says, it will have spent $26 million on ads attacking Trump’s character.

The spots could be especially harmful to Trump because his campaign and the handful of super PACs that back him have not responded with major ad buys that counter the attacks with a positive portrayal of him.

Priorities USA took a similar approach in battleground states at this stage of President Obama’s reelection campaign four years ago. The group aired spots that successfully defined his GOP challenger Mitt Romney early on as a ruthless plutocrat who enriched himself at the expense of average American workers.

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Obama and Bernie Sanders discuss primary in phone call

President Obama spoke with Bernie Sanders on Sunday to discuss the lingering Democratic presidential primary, less than 48 hours before California voters head to the polls.

The two chatted by telephone for about 45 minutes, with Sanders taking the call while he was on a highway between events in the Los Angeles area, according to a person familiar with the conversation who was granted anonymity to discuss it.

Though the two have spoken from time to time in recent months, the timing of their latest call is another sign that leading Democrats are ready to wrap up the primary and form a united front against Donald Trump in the general election. Obama could endorse Clinton as early as Wednesday, White House aides say, but he has long signaled that he would take care to respect Sanders’ decision-making.

Sanders, down in delegates and the path narrowing in his quest for the Democratic presidential nomination against front-runner Hillary Clinton, has insisted that he will remain in the primary until the party’s nominating convention in Philadelphia in July.

As he has traversed California in recent days, Sanders has insisted that Clinton will not have enough delegates to become the party’s nominee.

But the math is not in his favor.

After winning a majority of delegates in Puerto Rico’s Democratic contest on Sunday, Clinton is just 23 delegates short of the total needed to secure the nomination. More than 600 pledged delegates will be up for grabs Tuesday in contests from California to New Jersey.

In Southern California on Monday, Clinton called on Sanders to take a page from her playbook in the 2008 primary: drop out.

“Tomorrow is eight years to the day after I withdrew and endorsed Obama,” Clinton said in Compton. “I believe it was the right thing to do no matter what differences we had.”

Staff writer Christi Parsons in Washington contributed to this report.

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Clinton wants Tuesday to be ‘Hillary Day’ in California

Hillary Clinton kicked off her star-studded final sprint through California at a boisterous rally at Plaza Mexico in Lynwood on Monday, urging voters to head to the polls.

“Tomorrow is a really big day,” she told several hundred supporters, one of whom yelled that it was “Hillary Day!” “Let’s hope it is,” she responded. “I would be deeply honored and humbled for it to be Hillary Day. But that depends on all of you and your family and your friends and your colleagues.”

Clinton is widely expected to clinch the Democratic nomination before the polls close in California on Tuesday. But the contest between Clinton and Democratic rival Bernie Sanders has tightened in California, and the candidate and her campaign have been working hard to avoid an embarrassing loss.

Clinton and her husband, former President Bill Clinton, have held dozens of events across the state in recent days. Many of the events have been aimed at Latino and black voters, who are more likely to cast ballots on election day rather than mailing them in in advance.

Actor Tony Goldwyn, who plays a fictional president on the television show “Scandal,” introduced Clinton by urging voters not to be complacent because Clinton is expected to win the nomination before the votes are counted in California.

“It’s unacceptable,” he said. “We have to win big in California. If we win decisively in California by all of us turning out and making it happen, we are going to send a message that this is a party that is united.”

Clinton told Goldwyn that she hoped the scandals that befall the White House in his show never happen in the real world. “But then I think about Donald Trump, and I get nervous,” she said.

Clinton said a Trump presidency would be dangerous for the nation and the world.

“Donald Trump is unqualified to be president and temperamentally unfit to be commander-in-chief,” Clinton said, citing his praise for dictators, his insults of allies and his apparent willingness to allow other countries to obtain nuclear weapons.

“When Donald Trump was asked, ‘Who are your foreign policy advisors? Who do you listen to, Mr. Trump?’ he said ‘I listen to myself because I have a very good brain,’” Clinton said. When he was asked to describe his foreign policy experience, ‘he said, ‘Well, I took the Miss Universe pageant to Russia.’ I mean you can’t help but laugh, but it’s kind of frightening, isn’t it?”

Clinton never mentioned Sanders, but instead sought to turn the vote Tuesday into a referendum on the general election.

“The best way to end the threat [Trump] presents to the country and the world is to defeat him starting tomorrow in the California primary,” she said.

Afterword, Clinton stopped by the Hawkins House of Burgers, a tiny family-owned burger shop in Watts. She picked up a Fat Bacon Cheese Burger, fries and a strawberry lemonade.

Outside, a man told Clinton: “It’s time to take it to Donald now. You did good the other night.”

Clinton urged the man to vote for her, promising, “I’m gonna go after him all the time. All the time.”

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Clinton reminds Sanders of what she did eight years ago Tuesday: Drop out

Hillary Clinton will very likely declare before the votes are even counted in California on Tuesday that she has clinched the Democratic nomination, as her big lead in New Jersey could earn her the final delegates she needs earlier in the evening.

Speaking to reporters in Compton on Monday, Clinton started to lay the groundwork for claiming victory, while being careful not to discourage California supporters from voting.

“It’s not over until it’s over, and tomorrow is a really important day, particularly right here in California,” she said.

Clinton signaled that she will have a lot to say about unifying the party, making history as the first female presidential nominee of a major party, and reaching out to her rival, Sen. Bernie Sanders -- tomorrow. “I’m still out here, as you can tell, at the senior center in Compton, talking to voters, encouraging people to come out and vote.”

But she also had a not-so-subtle message for Sanders. Clinton said she was in a tougher predicament than him at this time in 2008, when she was the runner-up. Clinton was running much closer to front-runner Barack Obama at this point in that race than Sanders is to her now. But in the spirit of party unity, she said, she withdrew.

“Tomorrow is eight years to the day after I withdrew and endorsed” Obama,” Clinton said. “I believe it was the right thing to do no matter what differences we had.”

Clinton’s comments to reporters came as Sanders held his a simultaneous news conference in which he continued to strike a defiant tone. He vowed that the party’s national convention in Philadelphia will be “contested.” Sanders said he will seek to pick off the superdelegates who have pledged their support to Clinton in an effort to win the nomination despite the near-certainty she will enter the convention having won several more states and millions more votes than Sanders.

But whether Sanders continues to work against Clinton into the summer is far from certain. At the moment, he is speaking like a candidate on the eve of a big election. Other candidates – including Clinton – have made the same vows in the past, only to rally behind the presumed nominee days later.

California voters will have a big say in the next move Sanders makes. Should the Vermonter eke out a win in California, it won’t award him with anything close to the delegates he needs to overcome Clinton’s lead, but it would likely motivate him to keep up his fight, and at least start the quixotic effort of trying to get some 500 superdelegates who have pledged their support to Clinton to abandon her.

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What comes after the California primary? Bernie Sanders bats away ‘speculation’

Kicking off his last day of stumping in California, Bernie Sanders was eager Monday to exhort voters to participate in Tuesday’s pivotal primary. He was not so keen to talk about what comes afterward.

Sanders pinned his chances in the state’s primary to voter turnount.

“If the turnout is high tomorrow, we will win,” he said. “If the turnout is very high, I think we will win by big numbers. If turnout is low, we will probably lose.”

But Sanders repeatedly batted away questions about how his campaign would proceed in the all-but-certain event that his rival, Hillary Clinton, wins enough delegates Tuesday to claim the Democratic nomination.

“You’re asking me to speculate. Let me just talk to you after the primary here in California,” Sanders said when asked whether he would endorse Clinton before next month’s national convention in Philadelphia. “Let’s assess where we are after tomorrow before we make statements based on speculation.”

When asked about the possibility that President Obama may endorse Clinton this week, Sanders dismissed it as “speculating before what is in fact the most important primary.”

And Sanders flashed irritation when a reporter asked what he would say to women who viewed his refusal to leave the race as sexist given that Clinton would be the first female presidential nominee for a major party.

“It’s not a serious question,” Sanders said, repeatedly talking over the New York Times reporter who posed the query. “So if Hillary Clinton runs for president, it is sexist for any man to oppose her? I don’t think it is sexist.”

Sanders did not lob much criticism at his Democratic competitor; instead, he directed most of his fire at Donald Trump, the presumptive GOP nominee, whom Sanders accused of “running his campaign on bigotry.”

Sanders called Trump’s attacks on the Mexican heritage of Judge Gonazalo Curiel, who is presiding over a lawsuit involving Trump University, “really quite incomprehensible.”

He cited polls showing that he was outperforming Clinton in head-to-head match-ups against Trump, arguing that he was better positioned to make sure this “type of bigotry does not end up in the White House.”

That was one of several arguments Sanders said he will be making to superdelegates, the pool of elected officials and party elders whose votes are not bound by primary results. Because Sanders lags behind Clinton in pledged delegates, his only hope in wresting the nomination from her would be to sway superdelegates to his side.

Sanders threw out a number of metrics for superdelegates to consider.

“We’ve won in every state we have contested in,” he said. And, he noted, his campaign performs particularly well with voters under 45, or as he labeled them, “the people who are the future of this country.”

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Republican critics line up against Trump for comments about Latino judge

(Andrew Harnik / Associated Press)

Fallout from Donald Trump’s latest inflammatory comments -- these directed at a Latino judge overseeing a fraud lawsuit against the now-defunct Trump University -- continued on Monday with a host of Republicans condemning the billionaire businessman.

Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, who battled Trump through much of the GOP primary before exiting the race in March after Trump defeated him in his home state, dismissed the comments as ignorant.

“It’s wrong and I hope he stops,” said Rubio in an interview with a local Florida television station.

On Sunday, Trump, the presumptive Republican nominee, said on CBS the ethnicity of U.S. District Judge Gonzalo Curiel, who is presiding over the suit, should disqualify him from the case. In the interview, Trump said Curiel is “a member of a club or society very strongly pro-Mexican,” and is unable to be unbiased in the court hearing. Trump also falsely referred to the Indiana-born judge as “Mexican.”

Trump announced his candidacy last year by describing Mexican immigrants as mostly “rapists” and drug runners. Moreover, Trump has repeatedly vowed to build a massive wall along the U.S.-Mexico border, comments that have sparked outrage among immigrant-rights groups.

“I don’t think it reflects well on the Republican Party. I don’t think it reflects well on us as a nation,” added Rubio, who has said he will support the GOP nominee.

Sen. Ben Sasse of Nebraska, among a group of Republicans who have vowed to not support Trump, labeled him a racist.

“Saying someone can’t do a specific job because of his or her race is the literal definition of ‘racism,’” tweeted Sasse.

Another critic of Trump, Sen. Jeff Flake of Arizona, who has eschewed attending Trump’s rallies in his state, said the comments were a “new level” for Trump who has, among others, offered inflammatory rhetoric about women and Muslims.

“His statements this week on the judge -- that’s a new level,” Flake said on MSNBC. “Because it’s not just ... ill-informed or ignorant statements, but they suggest that when he’s president, you know, after November, that ... perhaps he ought to go after that judge. That’s a whole new level. So that’s -- it’s very disturbing.”

Earlier on Monday, Trump dismissed former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, who is believed to be under consideration to become Trump’s running mate. Gingrich said Trump’s comments about the judge were inexcusable.

“All I’m trying to do is figure out why I’m being treated so unfairly by a judge,” Trump said on Fox News, calling Gingrich’s comment “inappropriate.”

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Schwarzenegger votes for Kasich -- not Trump -- in the California primary

Former Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has studiously avoided weighing in on presumptive GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump.

But on Monday, he let his ballot do the talking.

Schwarzenegger, a Republican, voted for Ohio Gov. John Kasich on his mail-in ballot, said spokesman Daniel Ketchell.

Kasich dropped out of the race for the Republican nomination in early May, a day after he lost the Indiana primary. The sole state he won was his home state.

Schwarzenegger long has been close with Kasich, in part because he holds his Arnold Classic bodybuilding competition in Ohio.

Schwarzenegger previously endorsed and raised money for Kasich.

Schwarzenegger served two terms as governor of California, from 2003 to 2011. He is one of only two Republicans elected to statewide office in the last decade.

He has replaced Trump as host of TV’s “Celebrity Apprentice,” but has repeatedly avoided discussing the New York business mogul.

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Hillary Clinton speaks to the media in Compton as she nears the nomination

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Hillary Clinton’s brother-in-law Roger jailed after DUI arrest in Redondo Beach

Hillary Clinton’s brother-in-law Roger was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence in Redondo Beach on Sunday night, police said.

Roger Cassidy Clinton was arrested about 8:05 p.m. and and is being held in the city jail on $15,000 bail, jail records show. If he does not post bail, he’ll likely be arraigned Monday afternoon in a courthouse in Torrance, said Redondo Beach police Lt. Joe Hoffman.

About 7:20 p.m., a motorist called police to report a driver southbound on Pacific Coast Highway, possibly drunk and driving in “an erratic manner,” police said in a statement.

“The report was he was driving erratically, violating multiple” traffic laws, Hoffman said.

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Indiana Democrats: Trump ‘crossed the line’ with comments against Trump University case judge

(Bebeto Matthews / Associated Press)

Democrats in Indiana condemned Donald Trump on Monday for his assertion that the judge trying the Trump University lawsuit cannot do so fairly because of his Mexican heritage.

The judge, Gonzalo Curiel, is an Indiana native. Trump accused him of being unfit to serve as presiding judge in the case, saying that his Mexican heritage presents “an inherent conflict of interest.”

But Indiana Democrats aren’t buying it.

“Trump used ‘Mexican’ as a derogatory phrase to describe Judge Curiel,” said former Indiana state Rep. John Aguilera. “Frankly, I’m not surprised by seeing Trump attack good, honest people like Gonzalo Curiel.”

Aguilera recounted his own experience with Trump when the billionaire’s organization was trying to bring casino gambling to Indiana. According to Aguilera, he and other minority investors were shut out of the process to establish a resort, and later settled out of court with the Trump organization.

The party called on Indiana Republicans to condemn Trump’s remarks, criticizing the state GOP’s support of Trump despite his past comments disparaging women and other minorities. Trump won Indiana’s Republican primary last month, prompting rival candidate Ted Cruz to drop out of the race.

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Donald Trump’s attack on judge and other racial comments stir trouble for the Republican Party

(Rich Pedroncelli / Associated Press)

Defying critics across the political spectrum, Donald Trump insisted that the ethnicity of a Latino judge should disqualify him from presiding over a fraud lawsuit against the business mogul and suggested that no Muslim could oversee the case either.

Trump told CBS News that U.S. District Judge Gonzalo Curiel was “a member of a club or society very strongly pro-Mexican” and thus cannot be impartial with a presidential candidate proposing a border wall.

“If it were a Muslim judge, would you also feel like they wouldn’t be able to treat you fairly because of that policy of yours?” news anchor John Dickerson asked Trump in a “Face the Nation” interview that aired Sunday.

“It’s possible, yes,” said Trump, who has called for a temporary ban on Muslims entering the United States. “Yeah, that would be possible, absolutely.”

Even for a man who launched his candidacy by accusing Mexico of sending rapists and drug dealers across the border, Trump’s recent remarks about Latinos and Muslims were extraordinary, sparking fresh accusations of bigotry.

His comments came after months of violent and racially charged clashes at his rallies between his overwhelmingly white supporters and protesters, many of them Latino or African American. Riot police are routinely deployed outside Trump’s events to keep the two sides apart, a sign of potential trouble at next month’s Republican National Convention in Cleveland.

Aside from the social implications in a nation with a wrenching history of racial strife, Trump’s escalating attacks on the judge have unsettled top Republicans who are fretting over the party’s fate in November.

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David French who? Conservative writer takes himself out of the running for president

It could have made a great bumper sticker: “a pretty darn obscure lawyer, writer and veteran” for president!
Alas, David French used that phrase to describe himself as he bowed out Sunday night from a race he was never in.

The National Review writer had indeed given the notion of a third-party run serious thought and consideration, he wrote. He was being courted by conservative activists -- including William Kristol, the editor of the Weekly Standard.

French made the announcement in an essay in the National Review, in which he sharply attacked Republican Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton as liars, among other things.

“Here is a sentence I never thought I’d type: After days of prayer, reflection, and serious study of the possibilities, I am not going to run as an independent candidate for president of the United States,” he wrote.

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John Kasich tells Donald Trump to apologize for attacking judges ‘based on their race’

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Clinton strategist: ‘We win a tight race’ in California

In the neck-and-neck battle in Tuesday’s California primary, Hillary Clinton’s campaign is confidently predicting victory.

“Like a lot of states, it’s close, it’s competitive. I think we win a tight race,” top Clinton strategist Joel Benenson said Monday on CNN’s “New Day.”

Even if Clinton wins, rival Bernie Sanders has vowed repeatedly to continue to campaign. But Benenson said the Democrats need to come together in the face of the danger that the Republican pick Donald Trump brings.

“We want to have a convention that unites the party, that energizes the party because the stakes in this race are pretty high,” Benenson said.

Clinton needs only 26 more delegates to secure the Democratic nomination. Tuesday’s nominating contests include California, Montana, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Dakota and South Dakota. The final primary, in the District of Columbia, is June 14.

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Trump calls Gingrich’s criticism of his attacks on judge ‘inappropriate’

Donald Trump laid into Newt Gingrich on Monday for “inappropriate” criticisms of Trump’s attacks on the federal judge in the Trump University lawsuit.

“All I’m trying to do is figure out why I’m being treated so unfairly by a judge,” Trump said on Fox News’ “Fox and Friends.”

Trump accused U.S. District Judge Gonzalo Curiel of being biased on the case because of his Mexican heritage, saying Curiel, who was born in Indiana, can’t be impartial because of Trump’s plan to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. Trump’s assertion has been widely criticized.

Gingrich, the former House speaker who has been a Trump ally, called Trump’s accusation “inexcusable” and “one of the worst mistakes” by the presumptive GOP nominee.

“This is no longer the primaries. He’s no longer an interesting contender,” Gingrich said on Fox News Sunday. “He is now the potential leader of the United States, and he’s got to move his game up to the level of being a potential leader.”

Trump has also come under fire for saying Muslim judges may also not be able to judge fairly based on religious bias, and for pointing out a black man at one of his rallies as “my African American.”

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In the age of Trump, Speaker Paul Ryan rolls out a ‘better GOP’

House Speaker Paul D. Ryan is rolling out the first wave of a new Republican agenda this week, but will it matter in the age of Donald Trump?

House Republicans are tackling thorny policy issues, starting Tuesday with a poverty-fighting plan and followed in weeks to come with strategies on taxes and other issues, but the speaker has acknowledged he has no guaranteed buy-in from the GOP’s presidential hopeful.

Ryan gave Trump his endorsement last week and hopes the multipart agenda can provide a calling card for Republican lawmakers’ reelection campaigns. He also hopes it can provide an agenda for a Republican White House.

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Clinton and Sanders are a study in contrasts on the final weekend of campaigning

The most raucous and extended California primary battle in decades comes to a close Tuesday with two Democrats demonstrating both a threatening schism in their party and wildly different styles from which voters will choose.

Bernie Sanders gallivanted around California like a tourist on a weeks-long trip, sampling In-N-Out, popping into a neighborhood in Echo Park -- albeit with a Golden State Warriors cap on his head in defiance of local preference -- and strolling on the Santa Monica Pier.

He staged the big rallies that have been the hallmark of his insurgent candidacy, but also adopted an increasingly caustic tone as he fought against predictions of his imminent demise.

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Hillary Clinton’s primary playbook: Woo black voters to offset Sanders’ young backers

Hillary and Bill Clinton kicked off their final campaign sprints by worshiping in the pews of historic African American churches Sunday morning -- an indication of the importance of African American voters to her hope of winning a potentially tight California primary.

“I promise you I will work my heart out for you,” Clinton told congregants at Greater St. Paul Church in Oakland, where she swayed in her seat as she listened to a choir sing.

About 375 miles south, at the First African Methodist Episcopal Church in Los Angeles, Bill Clinton blasted presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump’s slogan, “Make America great again.”

“That’s a code slogan for, ‘We’re going to make it great the way it was 40 or 50 years ago,’” Clinton said, drawing applause as he added, “Well, it wasn’t so great for a lot of people 40 or 50 years ago.”

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