An aide says he once arranged for $50 million in payments for Bill Clinton
A onetime close aide to Bill Clinton said he arranged for $50 million in payments for the former president, part of a complicated mingling of lucrative business deals and charity work for the Clinton Foundation mapped out in a memo released by WikiLeaks on Wednesday.
The report was written by Doug Band, who has transitioned from his job as a Clinton aide to a partner in Teneo Consulting, a firm whose client roster now includes some of the biggest companies in the world. Along the way, Band wrote, he also pushed his clients and contacts to donate millions of dollars to the Clinton Foundation and to help win business deals for Bill Clinton.
Pence warns that a vote for a third party is a vote for Clinton
GOP vice presidential nominee Mike Pence warned Republicans on Wednesday that a vote for a third-party candidate was a vote to hand the White House to Hillary Clinton.
“A vote for any candidate other than Donald Trump, bottom line, is a vote to make Hillary Clinton the 45th president of the United States,” Pence said while campaigning in Salt Lake City. “It’s the hard truth. It’s time to come home. It’s time for Republicans to come home.”
It was notable that Pence made the remarks in Utah, where he and GOP nominee Donald Trump may not win the longtime Republican stronghold due to the candidacy of independent Evan McMullin.
Utah last voted for a Democratic presidential candidate more than a half-century ago. But in recent polls, Trump has been in a statistical tie with McMullin, with both of them edging Clinton.
Trump is unpopular in Utah because the state’s large Mormon population is deeply uncomfortable with the GOP nominee’s tone, his rhetoric about immigrants and his calls for a Muslim ban.
The Church of Latter-Day Saints teaches compassion for immigrants, is known for sending missionaries all over the world and remains scarred by its experiences of religious persecution.
Pence never mentioned McMullin by name as he urged the crowd to vote right after the rally. He read the address and the hours of the local polling place, noting it was only 2.2 miles away.
“It’s time to reach out to our fellow Republicans here in Utah and all over the country and say with one voice, it’s time to come home,” Pence said. “I want you to tell your Republican neighbors and friends, this is not the time to make a statement, this is our chance to make a difference. The truth of the matter is there are only two names on that ballot that have a chance to become president of the United States.”
Trumps warns a stampede of love – say, for a certain politician at a rally – can kill
Donald Trump warned of a new election season threat Wednesday: The stampede of love at his rallies.
It was a quip made in jest. Sort of. Trump told a group of African American faith and community leaders in Charlotte that so many people wanted to attend a recent campaign rally in must-win Florida that law enforcement couldn’t let them in.
“They said, ‘We’re afraid of a stampede,’ ” Trump told the black leaders, according to a pool report of the private meeting. “Can you imagine? Because there were so many people, if there were a stampede we’d be in trouble.”
“Even out of love!” Trump said. “Love can kill too.”
Trump points to his employees when asked why Latinos should feel safe voting for him
Donald Trump, asked about his message to the Latino community and why they should vote for him, responded by citing the “happy” Latino employees at his Doral golf resort near Miami.
“They are so happy. They love their job. They can’t — one of them got up this morning and actually said, ‘We can’t wait to get to work.’ It was so incredible. And they love their job,” Trump said in an interview on a Spanish talk radio station in Miami.
“They love what they’re doing, and you know, I have thousands over the years, thousands and thousands of Hispanic employees from all over, from all over, from all different countries, but thousands,” Trump said. “Many, many Cubans work for me. Incredible people.”
The Republican nominee was responding to a question from Radio Mambí’s Ninoska Pérez Castellón. “In view of all the negative publicity, what would you say to the Hispanic community? Why should the Hispanic community feel safe voting for you?”
After praising his golf resort and his employees, Trump predicted he would do “very well” with Latino voters.
“I think we’re going to get tremendous, we’re going to get tremendous votes, and I also think we’re going to do really well with the Cuban community. But I’ve been doing well with the Cuban community because they understand what I — how I feel,” he said.
Trump kicked off his presidential bid last year by characterizing many Mexican migrants as criminals and rapists. In campaign events, he vows to build a tall wall along the southwest border of the U.S. to stop illegal immigration.
He has consistently done poorly in polls of Latino voters.
An NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll released this month showed Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton beating Trump 67% to 17% among Latino voters in a four-way race with Libertarian Gary Johnson and Green Party nominee Jill Stein.
Trump’s message to rally in Israel: ‘We will stand up to the enemies like Iran’
Some of Donald Trump’s supporters in Israel gathered on a restaurant rooftop overlooking the walls of Jerusalem’s Old City on Wednesday and heard a brief message from the Republican nominee for the U.S. presidency.
The event was organized by the Israel chapter of Republicans Overseas, which has spent the last two months touting its campaign to register American expatriates in Israel and in the Jewish settlements of the West Bank.
One of their talking points: Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton would continue eight years of strained ties with Israel, much like Israel’s relationship with the Obama administration over the last eight years.
Despite the group’s plans for a rally with hundreds of attendees, the gathering drew a few dozen supporters and approximately the same number of journalists.
After a warm-up performance of the Six-Day War victory anthem “Jerusalem of Gold,” event speakers accused President Obama and Clinton of trying to block Israel from expanding neighborhoods in East Jerusalem — the part of the city claimed by Palestinians as a future capital — and repeated Trump’s pledge to recognize the city as Israel’s capital.
Speaking in a pre-recorded message that lasted less than a minute, Trump skipped mention of Jerusalem. Instead, he spoke of his daughter Ivanka’s decision to raise Jewish children, his “reverence” for the Jewish religion, and promised to strengthen the ties between the countries.
“Together, we will stand up to the enemies like Iran, bent on destroying Israel and her people,’’ he said to a smattering of applause. “Together, we will make America and Israel safe again.’’
Yoaz Hendel, a journalist and former advisor to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the Trump rally did not bode well for the Republican nominee because of what he said was a failure to attract high-profile speakers from the Israeli right.
“It doesn’t look good for Donald Trump. At least in this American province,’’ he said. “Most of the speakers are not from the mainstream.’’
Tim Kaine courts Utah’s Mormons by describing his time as a missionary
Democratic vice presidential nominee Tim Kaine courted Utah Mormons by describing his experiences as a missionary, further evidence that the longtime Republican stronghold state is in play this election.
“They say that nobody comes back from serving a mission the same person, and that was certainly true of me,” Kane wrote in the Deseret News on Monday, timed to coincide with new Mormon missionaries gathering in Provo.
“My time in Honduras became my North Star, a crucible of my values. It has influenced everything I’ve done in public life since: as a civil rights lawyer, city councilman, mayor, lieutenant governor, governor, and now, a senator.”
Utah last voted for a Democratic presidential candidate more than a half-century ago. But in recent polls, GOP nominee Donald Trump has been running neck and neck with independent candidate Evan McMullin, with both of them edging Hillary Clinton.
In a sign of the Republicans’ concern about losing the state, Trump’s running mate, Mike Pence, is campaigning in Salt Lake City on Wednesday.
Trump’s unpopularity in Utah is because the state’s large Mormon population is deeply uncomfortable with the GOP nominee because of his tone, his rhetoric about immigrants and his calls for a Muslim ban. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints teaches compassion for immigrants, is known for sending missionaries all over the world and remains scarred by its experiences of religious persecution.
Kaine touched on these themes, saying that the Roman Catholic Church, to which he belongs, also has experienced persecution.
“That should never happen in our country. We are a nation of immigrants, many of them drawn to our nation by the promise of religious freedom,” Kaine wrote. “We have no higher calling than to build a nation where all are free to lead safe, dignified and productive lives.”
Without naming Trump, Kaine wrote that basic American values were at stake in this election.
“This election season has taught us some uncomfortable lessons, not the least of which is how a person’s religious tradition can be used as a weapon by politicians seeking to capitalize on fear,” he wrote. “Hillary Clinton and I pledge to stand with you against these dangerous threats to our American values, and for the safety and the integrity of our families. Americans may worship divinity in different ways, but far more unites than divides us in our values, dreams and traditions.”
Donald Trump’s new hotel becomes a target for Hillary Clinton
Hillary Clinton is trying to rain on Donald Trump’s parade.
While the Republican nominee was in Washington, D.C., touting his new hotel, she was in Florida criticizing the project.
“He once again relied on undocumented workers, the same people he has been insulting and demonizing throughout this campaign,” Clinton said.
As evidence, Clinton’s campaign pointed to a Washington Post article in which a reporter spoke to workers who said they were in the country illegally.
To drive home the criticism, Clinton was introduced in Tampa by José Andrés, a Spanish American chef who was going to open a restaurant in Trump’s hotel but backed out because of his insulting comments about Mexican immigrants.
Andrés and Trump are now enmeshed in a legal battle over the episode.
“Today I could be in a certain hotel in Washington, D.C., opening a restaurant inside,” Andrés told the crowd while wearing his white chef’s uniform. “But here I am.”
He added, “I would rather be with you in Tampa today.”
Hillary Clinton will spend election night under a giant glass ceiling in New York
Hillary Clinton has picked out a symbolism-laden spot for her party on election night.
The Democratic nominee and her supporters will celebrate or bemoan the results at the Javits Center in New York, her campaign said Wednesday. The convention hall has a glass ceiling, and Clinton has notably used the imagery of shattering the “glass ceiling” when she talks about trying to become the first female president.
Manhattan could end up being the center of the political world on election night if Donald Trump also decides to mark the occasion there.
He’s often used Trump Tower for campaign events, starting with announcing his candidacy there last year.
Trump: Why isn’t Clinton getting any flak for going to an Adele concert ‘all night long’?
Donald Trump blasted Hillary Clinton on Wednesday for taking time off the campaign trail to attend an Adele concert the prior evening, saying the Democratic nominee was getting a pass for a leisurely schedule while he was being criticized for attending his hotel opening.
“She has no energy. She’s got nothing going. She does one stop. And nobody complains about that. Nobody complains when she goes to an Adele concert all night long, while I’m making two speeches at rallies with, you know, massive crowds,” Trump told ABC News.
On Tuesday, Clinton held a rally in Coconut Creek, Fla., appeared on a Univision television show and headlined a fundraiser in Miami before attending the concert.
Trump’s criticism of Clinton aligns with his repeated claim that the Democratic nominee lacks the stamina to be president, and comes as he was facing criticism for attending the grand opening of his new hotel in Washington on Wednesday, rather than campaigning.
“I built one of the great hotels of the world. What am I supposed to do, not show up? I’m taking one hour off. I’m going to North Carolina right after this, then I’m going back down to Florida. I’m going up to New Hampshire. I’m all over the place,” Trump said. “I can’t take one hour off to cut a ribbon at a one of the great hotels of the world? I mean, I think I’m entitled to it.”
Hillary Clinton says she’s running a campaign to save democracy
Hillary Clinton is raising the stakes in the election, telling Florida crowds during a two-day swing through the state that a vote for her is nothing less than a vote for democracy.
Over and over, she’s pointed to Donald Trump’s refusal to say he’ll accept the results of the election, accusing him of putting the United States on a slippery slope toward a dictatorship.
“Donald Trump is attacking everything that has set our country apart for 240 years,” she said on Tuesday in Coconut Creek. “After spending his entire campaign attacking one group of Americans after another … now his final target is democracy itself.”
She joked that Trump would have called George Washington a “loser” for stepping down as president after two terms instead of seeking to become a king.
Clinton continued her criticisms on Wednesday in Lake Worth, where she recalled her trips around the world as the country’s top diplomat. Many other countries, she said, don’t have free elections like the United States.
“We have free and fair elections and a peaceful transfer of power,” she said. “We fool around with that and we criticize that, at our peril.”
Clinton’s argument also allows her to claim that her campaign also represents something of a movement, much like Trump has described his own candidacy.
“At the very moment that Donald Trump is making an unprecedented attack on our democracy, we’ve had millions and millions of people registered to vote, voting early and volunteering,” she said.
Clinton hopes the sharp attacks on Trump drive up turnout in Florida, a critical battleground state where a win would nearly guarantee her victory on election day.
“It’s going to be a close election,” she said in Coconut Creek. “Pay no attention to the polls.”
Someone took a sledgehammer to Donald Trump’s star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame
Donald Trump’s star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame has had a rough go of it since the controversial business mogul and reality television star became a Republican presidential candidate.
It has been stomped on and people have spray-painted a swastika and “mute” icon on it. Someone else built a miniature border wall around the star.
On Wednesday morning, Los Angeles police were investigating the latest case of vandalism — and it trumped anything that came before. Deadline reported that a man dressed as a construction worker arrived around 5:45 a.m. Wednesday and smashed the star using a sledgehammer and pickax.
The art of the brand: Trump mixes business and politics at hotel opening
Donald Trump’s presidential bid often has dipped into a glitzy brand promotion, but perhaps never has the line between business and politics been more blurred than at his opening event Wednesday for his Washington hotel.
Trump’s campaign insisted the ribbon-cutting at Trump International Hotel’s storied Pennsylvania Avenue address was not a campaign event. Rather, it was a “corporate ceremony” convened in the hotel’s gilded “Presidential Ballroom” 13 days before the election, as a record number of Americans are voting early.
“Today’s a metaphor for what we can accomplish for this country,” Trump said, flanked by his children as campaign supporters and aides stood nearby.
“Right now, just about everything our government touches is broken — or they break it.”
By contrast, his renovation of the stately old post office building, he said, was on time and budget.
“This building is a historical landmark, a true American original. It had all the ingredients for greatness, but it had been neglected and left to deteriorate.
“Now, I want to give back to the country I love so much,” Trump said.
The GOP presidential nominee talked up his next campaign stop, later Wednesday in Charlotte, N.C., to talk about urban renewal.
This election has shown that Trump can blend business promotion and political branding like no other candidate in modern politics.
The new hotel, situated between Congress and the White House, includes meeting rooms named after founding fathers and a bar in honor of the first postmaster general, Benjamin Franklin.
The scene that drew business and political supporters was not unlike one a day earlier at Trump’s golf course resort in Doral, Fla., where he called a media event to showcase the political support of his employees — and to promote the hotel’s renovations. He noted, in particular, his use of the best fine marble.
The Trump brand, though, has taken a beating as his campaign rhetoric spooked corporate businesses and turned off customers.
Macy’s swiftly dropped Trump’s clothing line at the outset of his campaign when he called Mexican immigrants “rapists.” And the makers of Skittles candies and Tic Tac breath mints have distanced their products from Trump-related comments on the campaign trail.
Protesters from unions and other groups filled the sidewalk outside the hotel Wednesday.
As Trump’s chances for the White House dim, with polls showing him lagging behind Democratic rival Hillary Clinton, his brand may be what remains after the brutal campaign.
Remember all that speculation about millennials not backing Clinton? Wrong
Remember all the speculation that younger voters wouldn’t turn out to support Hillary Clinton in this year’s presidential election?
Wrong, according to the latest, large-scale survey of young voters by Harvard’s Institute of Politics. The survey contradicts a lot of anecdotes that have provided the basis for campaign stories this fall.
Just under half of 18- to 29-year-olds, 49%, said they would “definitely” vote this year -- almost identical to the 48% at this point in 2012, the poll found. Clinton’s share of the vote was somewhat higher than Obama’s was four years ago.
The poll showed Clinton getting 49% of the vote of people aged 18-29, with Trump taking just 21%.
Young women, who many analysts said were not excited by Clinton’s candidacy, were more likely to say they would definitely vote than their counterparts in the last election. Clinton has gained an even larger advantage among them than Obama had in his reelection.
By contrast, young men seem slightly less likely to vote than in 2012. So do young Republicans, who were noticeably less likely than young Democrats.to say they would definitely vote this time around. Young Republicans were also less likely to back Donald Trump than their counterparts four years ago were to support Mitt Romney.
More than 7 in 10 Clinton supporters said they were “enthusiastic” about her candidacy -- besting the 65% of Trump supporters who expressed enthusiasm for their candidate.
Another oft-repeated piece of conventional wisdom was that Clinton would not do well among young, minority voters. The poll challenged that notion, too.
Young Latinos appear more likely to vote than four years ago, although Clinton may be running behind Obama’s level among them. The margin of error for that subgroup is large, so the verdict on both points is a bit cloudy.
Among young black voters, her margin -- an 85-percentage-point lead over Trump -- is identical to Obama’s four years ago, and the share who said they definitely would vote was almost identical to 2012.
Almost three-quarters of young Latinos, 72%, and 85% of young African Americans said they believed that people of their race or ethnicity were “under attack” in the U.S. today.
Overall, more than 6 in 10 young Americans polled said that race relations would worsen if Trump were elected president. If Clinton is elected, 36% said they expected race relations to stay about the same, while 23% predicted they would improve and 22% said they would worsen.
About 1 in 5 young voters said they planned to vote for a third-party candidate, with 14% saying they would vote for the Libertarian, Gary Johnson, while 5% backed Jill Stein of the Green Party. But 37% of the potential Johnson voters said they were likely to change their minds, something that almost none of the Clinton or Trump voters said.
The poll was conducted Oct. 7 to 17 -- covering the period from just before the second presidential debate until just before the final one. In the average of national surveys, Clinton’s lead has been stable since then. The poll surveyed 2,150 Americans aged 18 to 29 and has a margin of error of 3.1 percentage points in either direction.
Donald Trump to New Gingrich: Nice job on the Megyn Kelly interview
Hillary Clinton promises to ‘fix’ Obamacare rate hikes, but that’s unlikely with a GOP-held House
Hillary Clinton promised to fix problems with Obamacare that led to average rate hikes of 25% next year for mid-level health plans before subsidies.
But a quick fix, or any fix, seems unlikely given that it would probably require congressional action.
“We’re going to make changes to fix problems like that,” Clinton said in an interview Wednesday with WHQT HOT 105.1 Miami. “The president and I have talked about it.”
“We’re going to really tackle that,” she added. “We’re going to get co-pays and premiums and deductibles down. We’re going to tackle prescription drug costs. And we can do that without ripping away the insurance that people now have. That’s the plan of my opponent.”
Jonathan Gruber, a former key advisor on the law, said on CNN on Wednesday that one such fix would involve raising the penalty for people who forgo insurance, to get more healthy people paying into the system, which could lower costs for others.
Even under the rosiest scenarios for Democrats, most political analysts believe Republicans would retain control of the House, which has voted dozens of times to repeal Obamacare. GOP leaders are under intense pressure from their core voters to keep pressure on defeating the law and have shown no appetite to work with Democrats to fix it.
Clinton certainly knows that. She went on to make another case for the law.
“Look, this is a major step forward: 20 million people” insured, she said. “And actually, I’m sure you noticed, predominantly working people, African American, Latino people now have access to insurance.”
Donald Trump , she argued, would “take everything away, give it all back to the insurance companies.”
Foundation allegations? Classified documents on a hard drive? South Korean scandal has Hillary Clinton overtones
Tuesday, South Korean President Park Geun-hye stepped to the lectern, facing dozens of news cameras and what might be the biggest challenge of her presidency. She made a hastily arranged public apology for a growing scandal that has been roiling South Korean politics for weeks.
The scandal revolves around a close associate of Park’s, Choi Soon-sil, the daughter of Park’s late mentor, and charges that Choi used her ties to the president to pressure corporations to cough up millions in donations to dubious foundations that Choi allegedly used like a personal ATM. Park has also been accused of blindly following directives from Choi, someone with no job in government or official public profile.
What sparked Tuesday’s apology was a report the previous day by a South Korean television network, part of a media maelstrom in recent weeks, which revealed that an old computer hard drive belonging to Choi contained classified documents Park had sent her. In a furor similar to that surrounding Hillary Clinton’s use of an email server, critics charged that Park was irresponsibly managing official information.
Black Lives Matter activist DeRay Mckesson endorses Hillary Clinton
Black Lives Matter activist DeRay Mckesson announced his endorsement of Hillary Clinton for president Wednesday.
“There is much work that lies ahead, and Clinton is ready and prepared to do the hard work,” Mckesson wrote in an op-ed published in the Washington Post. “And we can, and will, hold her accountable every step of the way.”
Some prominent activists linked to Black Lives Matter, including Mckesson, have hesitated over whether to support Clinton’s campaign. But he said he does not believe in refusing to vote, and he agrees more than disagrees with Clinton.
“Clinton’s platform on racial justice is strong: It is informed by the policy failings of the past and is a vision for where we need to go,” Mckesson wrote.
Mckesson ran in the Democratic mayoral primary this spring in his native Baltimore, where he finished sixth.
Cake for breakfast? Well, it is Hillary Clinton’s birthday
Clinton turned 69 on Wednesday. She’s spending the day campaigning in Florida before flying home to New York.
Hillary Clinton balances out her baseball passion
So I started looking at baseball cards and talking to the kids. I said, ‘The Yankees always win.’ So I’ll be depressed about the Cubs, and I’ll be happy about the Yankees. That’s how I’d balance it out.
— Hillary Clinton, on “The Breakfast Club” radio show Wednesday morning, explaining how she adopted a second baseball team as a child
When Donald Trump loses focus, his campaign manager is a lifeline
Donald Trump’s penchant for getting sidetracked from his core message is well documented. But his campaign manager may be just as good at avoiding distractions.
Watch Kellyanne Conway’s interview with NBC’s “Today” show Wednesday for a master class in turning tough questions into campaign talking points.
Donald Trump’s constant and unsubstantiated claim that the polls and the election are rigged? Conway defends it by changing the subject to personal attacks lodged from Hillary Clinton and then changes it again to make a broader comment about disillusionment with Washington.
“On the rigged, corrupt system, he’s talking about people being left behind,” she said. “He’s talking about the forgotten man and forgotten woman.”
Won’t Trump’s supporters be angry if they lose on election day after being told they were winning in the polls? No, Conway said, pivoting this time to an attack on President Obama’s healthcare plan.
“The Trump supporters, if they’re angry at anything, it’s angry at Washington, it’s angry at Wall Street, it’s anger at the fact that they’re now opening up their mailboxes as I sit here and they’re getting whacked with these premium increases.”
Trump shouts on Twitter about Obamacare woes
Newt Gingrich to Fox’s Megyn Kelly: ‘You are fascinated with sex’
The feud between Donald Trump’s campaign and the news media took a new and heated turn Tuesday night. This time it played out between former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, a prime Trump spokesman, and Megyn Kelly, the Fox News host who was at the center of Trump’s first major blow-up with the media during the Republican primary.
The exchange between the two got heated as Gingrich accused Kelly and the rest of the media of giving outsized attention to allegations of sexually inappropriate conduct lodged against Trump from 11 women.
Kelly disagreed, insisting that her show has covered all the issues.
“You want to go back through the tapes of your show recently,” Gingrich retorted. “You are fascinated with sex, and you don’t care about public policy. That’s what I get out of watching your show tonight.”
Kelly fired back, pointing to polls that show the issue is important to voters, particularly women.
“Mr. Speaker, I’m not fascinated by sex but I am fascinated by the protection of women and understanding what we’re getting in the Oval Office,” Kelly said.
It continued from there, with a dare from Gingrich and a taunt from Kelly.
Gingrich: “And therefore we’re going to send Bill Clinton back to the East Wing. ... I want to hear you use the words ‘Bill Clinton, sexual predator.’ I dare you.”
Kelly: “We on ‘The ‘Kelly File’ have covered the Clinton matter as well. ... We’re going to have to leave it at that and you can take your anger issues and spend some time working on them, Mr. Speaker.”
Gingrich: “You too.”
Here’s what we know so far about voter fraud and the 2016 election
With two weeks until the election, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump has amped up charges that the election is “rigged” against him. His running mate, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, has warned at rallies about voter fraud “around the country.”
While voter fraud is rare — one study found just 31 credible claims of fraud amid more than a 1 billion ballots cast since the turn of the century — a handful of instances of voter fraud and voting irregularities have been found ahead of the election. At the same time, there have been accusations of voter suppression across the U.S., as civil rights groups have said Trump’s instructions to supporters to “go check out” polls in “certain areas” are a call to monitor minority votes.
Here’s a recap of reports of possible election interference that have surfaced so far.
Latinos in California have one big reason to go to the polls: Donald Trump
Galvanized to vote in the presidential race by Donald Trump’s anti-immigration rhetoric, Latinos in California are expected to turn out in large numbers in November and have considerable influence on down-ballot races and statewide propositions.
At nearly 39% of the population, Latinos are the largest ethnic group in the state. At the polls, however, they are typically underrepresented compared with other minority groups.
But Latino voters turned out in record numbers during the 2016 primary, a good sign for general election turnout, said Mindy Romero, who runs the California Civic Engagement Project at UC Davis.