Launching their fall presidential campaigns with competing visits to the Cleveland area, Donald Trump said Monday he plans to attend all three scheduled debates against Hillary Clinton, while Clinton stressed her experience at the expense of the maverick New York businessman.
Plugging a new campaign book authored with running mate Tim Kaine entitled “Strong Together,” Clinton also praised unions during a Labor Day gathering in Cleveland by crediting them for things like higher wages, weekends, and growth of the middle class — items she says would be at risk during a Trump presidency.
Fighting back a cough during her remarks, Clinton said at one point: “Every time I think of Trump, I get allergic”
Trump, speaking with reporters after a meeting with union members near Cleveland, said would appear the the debates, barring “hurricanes” or “natural disasters.” Trump said he is preparing for them the same way he did during the Republican primaries — including no mock debates, and nobody portraying his Democratic foe.
“I look forward to the debates,” Trump said. “I think it is an important element of what we’re doing. I think you have an obligation to do the debates.”
The first face-off with Clinton is set for Sept. 26 at Hofstra University in Long Island, N.Y.
Trump also began his post-Labor Day campaign by meeting with workers in Ohio, mocking President Obama’s trip to China, attacking a prominent Republican senator, and playing up favorable polls while ignoring surveys that show him trailing Clinton. At one point, both candidates’ campaign planes were on the ground at the same Cleveland airport.
The Republican nominee and running mate Mike Pence met with union members at an American Legion hall near Cleveland, and indicated they will stress the economy and jobs during the campaign’s last two months.
“We’re bringing back jobs,” Trump told reporters after the meeting. “Jobs is the whole deal.”
Speaking with reporters later, Trump knocked Obama over his visit to China for a Group of 20 nations summit. He cited China’s refusal to provide a staircase at the front of Air Force One and forcing the U.S. president to exit his plane from “a metal staircase in the back of the plane.”
If it had been him, Trump said, he would have told China, “I respect you a lot, but let’s get out of here.”
Trump also taunted Obama on social media about a difficult meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin on the sidelines of the G-20 summit. He also tweeted: “Sadly, because president Obama has done such a poor job as president, you won’t see another black president for generations!”
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SOURCE: USA Today, David Jackson