'They gave me a defective mic,' Donald Trump claims after heated debate
Donald Trump has suggested his microphone was not working properly during a heated presidential debate that could reshape the 2016 campaign for the White House.
During a visit to the media spin room after clashing with Hillary Clinton at the Hofstra University event, Mr Trump was initially asked about the moderator Lester Holt.
The Republican candidate replied that he thought Mr Holt "was fine", before claiming they "gave me a defective mic".
"Did you notice that? My mic was defective within the room," Mr Trump insisted.
He went on to suggest it was done on purpose. "I wonder. Was that on purpose? Was that on purpose? I had a mic that wasn't working properly..."
It was unclear what Mr Trump was referring to. The only notable audio interference picked up on television was some sniffing by Mr Trump, which was widely mocked on social media.
Mr Trump's claim about the microphone is far from the first time he has suggested that outside forces have conspired against him.
In August, he told a rally in Ohio that he feared the general election "is going to be rigged", adding that he had been hearing "more and more" that the election may not be contested fairly.
He had previously claimed repeatedly that both nomination processes were not fair. As well as the primary process being "rigged" in favour of Mrs Clinton in her battle with Mr Sanders, he said in April that the Republican nomination system "totally rigged and broken".
The televised face-off was the most anticipated moment in an election campaign that has been both historic and unpredictable.
Both sides expected a record-setting audience for the showdown, reflecting the intense national interest in the race to become America's 45th president.