In an interview with MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow on Thursday night, Hillary Clinton suggested Republican front-runner Donald Trump is egging on violence at his raucous rallies.
After a day dominated by stories about violence perpetrated by Trump supporters -- and even allegedly his campaign manager -- Clinton said she was “truly distraught and even appalled by a lot of what I see going on” at his events.
“Mr. Trump should not be urging people on. This is deeply distressing, and I think as the campaign goes further, more and more Americans are going to be, you know, really disturbed by the kind of campaign he's running,” she said. “You know, you can't just be flailing around inside the White House saying whatever comes out of your mouth. Markets rise and fall. Conflicts can begin or get worse.”
And for the second time in two days, Clinton put some distance between herself and President Obama.
With an eye on Tuesday’s primary contests in states hit hard by manufacturing job losses blamed on free trade agreements, Clinton said the president whom she usually sticks close to needs to do more.
“I wish the Obama administration right now would crack down on China's dumping of steel into our market. You know, that should not be permitted. We have some tools that are available to this administration. I'd like to see them use it, and I'd like to send a very clear message to China: You may have your own economic problems, but don't try to undermine and take away jobs in our steel industry any more than you already have,” Clinton said.
The US steel industry has been hit hard in the so-called Rust Belt, including Ohio, Missouri and Illinois, which all vote next week. She also mentioned her opposition to the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a massive new trade deal with a dozen Pacific countries backed by the White House.
“I think in some of these areas, like opposing [Obama] on TPP, I did hope that we would get an agreement I could support. It turned out I couldn't,” Clinton said. “I am speaking out and I am urging the administration not to go forward with market economy [status for China] and to crack down on dumping of steel."
In Wednesday night’s Democratic debate hosted by the Spanish-language channel Univision in Miami, Clinton also criticized the administration’s deportation raids. She repeated that criticism in her interview with Maddow, but also seemed to soften an apparent pledge from the night before not to deport undocumented immigrants without a criminal record.
“I don't like the raids, I don't like the roundups, I don't like the level of deportation that we've been seeing in this administration,” she said.
But she said she would not move to Canada if Trump were to win the presidency. “I would never leave our country, but I would certainly be spending a lot of time yelling at the TV set,” Clinton said.