Credit Mark Makela for The New York Times
Donald J. Trump suggested during a rally in Pennsylvania on Saturday that Hillary Clinton was not “loyal” to her husband, former President Bill Clinton, an insinuation about their relationship that plunged the 2016 presidential race further into a personal battle.
Mr. Trump told the crowd in Lancaster County, about 70 miles west of Philadelphia, that Mrs. Clinton’s only loyalty was to her donors and herself. He added: “I don’t even think she’s loyal to Bill, you want to know the truth. And really, folks, really, why should she be, right?”
A spokesman for Mrs. Clinton did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment.
Mr. Trump, who offered no evidence to support his aspersion, made the remark a day after he told The New York Times in an interview that he was prepared to attack Mrs. Clinton over her husband’s well-publicized infidelities before and during his presidency. In the interview, he called her an “enabler” and said she had attacked the women who said that Mr. Clinton had had affairs with or sexually harassed them.
Mr. Trump, the Republican nominee, has struggled to move past a widely panned performance last week in his first debate against Mrs. Clinton. But he has simply repeated criticisms of her regarding her husband, as well as attacks on a former Miss Universe whom Mrs. Clinton mentioned during the debate as someone Mr. Trump had once belittled.
Mr. Trump, whose first marriage ended in a deeply public and tabloid-focused affair with the woman who became his second wife, Marla Maples, told The Times that infidelity had never been an issue for him.
At other points during the rally, Mr. Trump reprised his claims from August, during another difficult stretch of his campaign, that there was vote-rigging in “certain areas” of Pennsylvania — again without proof — and he urged his supporters to monitor polling places in those sections of the state. The remarks have been seen as a reference to places populated by minorities.
For Mr. Trump, who is trailing badly in polls with women, the new attack on Mrs. Clinton is a risky strategy. At the rally, he also repeated his criticism from the debate that Mrs. Clinton lacked the stamina to be president, a comment that many women viewed as sexist.
To make his point, he mocked her stumble at a memorial event on Sept. 11, when she left early with what her doctor described as a bout of pneumonia. He swooned back and forth at his lectern and then walked away from it, pretending to lurch forward.
“Here’s a woman, she’s supposed to fight all of these different things, and she can’t make it 15 feet to her car,” Mr. Trump said. “Give me a break.”
Video by Right Side Broadcasting
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