Thursday 22 February 2018

Trump warns of World War Three if Clinton elected to White House

The Republican nominee said defeating Isil was more important than persuading Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to step down. Photo: AP Photo/ Evan Vucci
The Republican nominee said defeating Isil was more important than persuading Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to step down. Photo: AP Photo/ Evan Vucci

Barney Henderson New York

Donald Trump has declared that Hillary Clinton's plan for Syria would "lead to World War Three".

The Republican nominee said defeating Isil was more important than persuading Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to step down.

"What we should do is focus on Isil. We should not be focusing on Syria," he said. "You're going to end up in World War Three over Syria if we listen to Hillary Clinton.

"You're not fighting Syria any more, you're fighting Syria, Russia and Iran, all right? Russia is a nuclear country, but a country where the nukes work as opposed to other countries that talk. Assad is secondary, to me, to Isil."

He added that his Democratic opponent would not be able to negotiate with Russian President Vladimir Putin after demonising him.

On another day of combative campaigning in Florida, Mr Trump also promised to repeal and replace Obamacare as soon as he was elected. "It's killing our businesses. It's killing our small businesses. And it's killing individuals," he said at a rally in Tallahassee, Florida.

Repeating his Brexit theme, he said: "There's gonna be a lot of Brexit happening in about two weeks."

He also mocked Joe Biden after the vice president said he wished he could take Mr Trump "behind the gym" to settle things following the revelation of the video tape that showed the Republican being sexually aggressive toward women.

"Mr Tough Guy!" Mr Trump teased. "You know when he's Mr Tough Guy? When he's standing behind a microphone by himself!"

Mrs Clinton, who was also campaigning in Florida, a key swing state, warned her supporters against complacency despite her massive lead in almost all opinion polls.

"I hope you will come out and vote because it's going to be a close election. Pay no attention to the polls. Don't forget, don't get complacent, because we've got to turn people out," she said.

Meanwhile, it was also claimed that Trump supporters are engaging in a 'voter suppression' strategy under which pro-Clinton "African Americans and suburban mums" are being persuaded not to vote, a campaigner told undercover reporters.

A senior figure involved in funding efforts to support the billionaire's campaign against Mrs Clinton boasted of how activists had adopted a scheme to "try to drop her turn-out two or three points" in key areas of the country.

Yesterday, Mr Trump's campaign defended his eyebrow-raising decision to spend time promoting his businesses in the final days of the presidential campaign as his poll numbers sink.

With less than two weeks left before election day, the Republican candidate took a break from campaigning yesterday morning to formally open his new hotel in Washington.

Meanwhile, he dispatched his running mate Mike Pence to Utah, which has not backed a Democrat for president in 52 years.

Mr Trump's hotel stop follows a visit on Tuesday to another of his properties, the Doral golf course outside Miami.

Mr Trump's campaign manager defended the stops, arguing that Mrs Clinton took time off to prepare for the debates and that stops at Mr Trump's hotels highlighted his business experience.

"Hillary Clinton took five days off to prepare for one debate and everyone looked at that as some kind of noble exercise," Kellyanne Conway said on NBC's 'Today' show.

"He's got the most active campaign schedule of the two candidates by far."

Mr Trump's appearance at the hotel opening came amid signs that his controversial presidential campaign had hurt his corporate brand. Rooms at the new $212m (¤194m) hotel that bears his name have been heavily discounted and smartphone data suggests fewer people are visiting his properties compared with rival venues nearby.

A new Facebook live show produced by his campaign has heightened speculation that Mr Trump may try to offset any losses with advertising revenue by starting a media network, a claim that he denies.

At his Miami golf course, employees, many of them Hispanic women, offered testimonials about how happy they are working for him - touting Mr Trump's job-creating prowess.

Mr Trump also promoted the workers as examples of people affected by rising Obamacare premiums, though the golf course's general manager later clarified that most workers receive their insurance through Mr Trump as their employer.

The federal government announced this week that premiums for insurance under President Barack Obama's signature healthcare law would rise sharply next year - news some Republicans heralded as an unexpected political gift.

"He could make this race for the last two weeks a referendum on Obamacare. But of course he won't do that," said former Ted Cruz strategist Chris Wilson. "It's just a matter of him swatting at flies instead of having a coherent and consistent message."

Irish Independent

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