Clinton: Economy no business of Trump
She rips her rival for running on his corporate record
WASHINGTON — His presidential dreams increasingly in jeopardy, Donald Trump pushed his business empire to the center of his political campaign Wednesday. Taking a brief break from battleground states, he made the case at his newest hotel that all Americans should look to his corporate record for evidence of how well he’d run the country.
Hillary Clinton agreed, but not the way he meant it. She used campaign events in Florida to attack the GOP nominee for having “stiffed American workers,” saying he built his empire with Chinese- manufactured steel, overseas products and labor from immigrants in the country illegally.
“Donald Trump is the poster boy for everything wrong with our economy,” she told several thousand supporters in Tampa, Fla. “He refuses to pay workers and contractors.”
Trump’s political aspira- tions have long been deeply intertwined with promoting his corporate goals. He announced his campaign in the gilded lobby of Trump Tower in Manhattan and has held dozens of campaign events at his own properties. His remarks at his new Washington hotel, which has struggled to fill rooms amid the controversy surrounding his presidential bid, followed a visit Tuesday to his Doral golf course outside Miami.
“Under budget and ahead of schedule. So important. We don’t hear those words so often, but you will,” said Trump, linking the hotel redevelopment — just blocks from the White House — to his promised performance as president. “Today is a metaphor for what we can accomplish for this country.”
Though the GOP nominee focused his remarks on his political message, the event was heavy with marketing, too. Standing under glittering chandeliers, top company executives, including his daughter, touted the hotel. And after his brief speech, Trump and his family headed to the hotel’s grand lobby where they cut a wide red ribbon with golden scissors before he flew to Republican nominee Donald Trump took a brief break from campaigning Wednesday to tout his business empire. North Carolina for what his campaign billed as an urbanpolicy speech.
In Charlotte, Trump unveiled what he billed a “New Deal for black America” in front of a mostly white crowd. Trump, who has struggled to earn the support of minority voters, bemoaned that “too many African-Americans have been left behind” and unveiled a handful of new proposals aimed at revitalizing impoverished urban areas.
They included new tax incentives for inner cities, new micro-loans for Afri- Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, who turned 69 on Wednesday, said Trump “stiffed American workers.” can-Americans to start companies and hire workers and reinvesting money from suspended refugee programs in inner cities.
He also wants cities to be able to seek federal disaster designations to help them rebuild infrastructure, demolish abandoned buildings and invest in law enforcement.
As Trump cut the ribbon at his hotel, Clinton was slamming his business practices in Florida, a state he must win to have any chance on Nov. 8.
Trump’s unusual travel schedule, coming amid signs that the controversy surrounding his campaign has hurt his corporate brand, raises questions about whether the GOP nominee has begun to turn some of his focus to postelection plans.
Rooms at the overhauled $212 million hotel that bears his name at Washington’s Old Post Office Pavilion have been heavily discounted, and smartphone data suggest fewer people are visiting his properties compared to rival venues. A new Facebook live show produced by his campaign has heightened speculation that he may try and offset any losses with advertising revenue from a newmedia network — a plan he denies.
Trump supporters defended his strategy, blasting critics for not making as big a deal of Clinton’s decision to attend an Adele concert Tuesday night. Trumptook a break from campaigning to see the singer perform during the GOP primaries.
“I can’t take one hour off to cut a ribbon at one of the great hotels of the world? I mean, I think I’m entitled to it,” he said in an interview with ABC News. He was more defensive in a CNN interview in which he called questions about his time away from swing state-campaigning “insulting” and “rude.”
In Charlotte, Trump said that he’d wanted to be at the hotel ceremony “for my children who worked so hard.”
Clinton told reporters: “I was struck today that Donald Trump was paying more attention to his business than to the campaign.”
Wednesday was Clinton’s 69th birthday. In her appearance on “The Breakfast Club” syndicated radio show popular with AfricanAmerican voters, singer Stevie Wonder serenaded the woman he called “Madam President Clinton.”
Meanwhile, Los Angeles police are investigating a pre-dawn attack that destroyed Trump’s star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
A man who identified himself as Jamie Otis said he’s responsible for the damage, telling the website Deadline Hollywood that he originally intended to remove Trump’s star.
He says he wanted to auction it off to raise funds for the 11 women accusing the presidential candidate of groping them. Trump has denied the allegations.