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Trump And Clinton Clash In Nasty Second Presidential Debate

BuzzFeed News reporters Ben Smith, Ruby Cramer, Adrian Carrasquillo, Darren Sands, Rosie Gray, and McKay Coppins are at Washington University in St. Louis. Ema O’Connor and Dominic Holden are reporting from New York and Emma Loop from Washington, D.C.

Originally posted on
Updated on

This debate was unlike any other. Here’s what happened:

  • Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump took the debate stage in the midst of a Trumpocalypse: On Friday a 2005 hot mic recording caught the Republican nominee effectively saying he sexually assaults women by grabbing their "pussy."
  • The debate got off to a very chilly start with Trump and Clinton skipping the traditional handshake at the outset of the showdown, instead nodding as they took the stage.
  • Trump defended his lewd comments about women as "locker room talk," insisting he had not grabbed women by their genitals as he was recorded saying.
  • Clinton defended her use of a private email server after the FBI found that she had sent and received information designated as top-secret. Trump said that if he is elected, Hillary Clinton will "be in jail."
  • The candidates clashed over the civil war in Syria, with Clinton calling the situation "catastrophic" and taking aim at Russia. Trump broke with his running mate Mike Pence and defended Moscow, insisting "Russia is killing ISIS."
  • An hour and a half before the debate, Trump held a Facebook Live event with four women who have accused former President Bill Clinton of sexual abuse.
  • Who do you think won the debate? Take our poll.

Missed the debate? Watch it here:

Updates

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Republican vice presidential nominee Mike Pence dismissed reports that he is considering dropping out of the race saying the nomination is "the greatest honor of my life."

"It's absolutely false to suggest at any point in time we considered dropping off thisticket," Pence told CNN Monday morning.

Before the second presidential debate, Pence said he cannot condone or defend Trump's 2005 remarks insinuating that he sexually assaulted women. He said that he believes Trump "moved on from [the] controversy," at Sunday's debate, adding that he thinks Trump showed his heart to the American people.

Read the full story here.

—Mary Ann Georgantopoulos and Tasneem Nashrulla

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Republican vice presidential nominee Mike Pence dismissed reports that he is considering dropping out of the race saying the nomination is "the greatest honor of my life."

"It's absolutely false to suggest at any point in time we considered dropping off thisticket," Pence told CNN Monday morning.

Before the second presidential debate, Pence said he cannot condone or defend Trump's 2005 remarks insinuating that he sexually assaulted women. He said that he believes Trump "moved on from [the] controversy," at Sunday's debate, adding that he thinks Trump showed his heart to the American people.

Read the full story here.

—Mary Ann Georgantopoulos and Tasneem Nashrulla

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Zucker, who appeared in the 2005 video minutes before Trump and Bush discussed her appearance, addressed the controversy before Sunday night's presidential debate, saying, "There are too many people in power who abuse their position."

In the 2005 video, Trump suggested that he might "start kissing" Zucker.

"You know I'm automatically attracted to beautiful… I just start kissing them. It's like a magnet. Just kiss. I don't even wait. And when you're a star, they let you do it. You can do anything. Grab them by the pussy," Trump said to Bush, who later prompted Zucker to hug both men.

In a statement posted to Twitter on Sunday, the actress said, "I have grown to learn that the words of others cannot effect the value of my self worth or define the content of my character."

Read her full statement here.
— Tasneem Nashrulla

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Equating Trump's lewd comments about women with sexual assault, "demeans" victims of sexual assault, Trump's campaign manager said.

.@KellyannePolls: Anderson Cooper went too far in accusing Trump of sexual assault

Kellyanne Conway addressed how Anderson Cooper framed Trump's lewd comments in 2005 as "bragging about sexual assault."

"When Anderson Cooper pressed Mr. Trump on sexual assault, Donald Trump shot back and said, 'No that's not what this was. These are words.' I think there's something there," Conway told Fox on Monday.

"This term 'sexual assault' has been bandied about," she said. "As somebody who has worked with, and certainly has in my life as I'm sure we all do, victims of sexual assault, it demeans them to equate that with this for political purposes."

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Debate moderator Martha Raddatz: "It was very easy to see Mr. Trump following Secretary Clinton around."

WATCH: "You don't know what to expect, but particularly last night." - co-moderator @MarthaRaddatz on #debate https://t.co/zBimS3icTs

Raddatz, who along with Andersoon Cooper, was widely praised for how she moderated the town hall presidential debate, described what it was like to be up close and personal with Trump and Clinton.

"You don't know what to expect, but particularly last night," Raddatz told Good Morning America. "You didn't know what the candidates plans were."

She said everybody knew they were "in for a long evening" when Trump and Clinton did not shake hands at the start of the debate.

She also addressed how Trump appeared to stand behind Clinton while she answered questions, freaking some people out.

"It was very easy to see Mr. Trump following Secretary Clinton around and you could feel that in the room," Raddatz said.

She said that the audience "had to be somewhat surprised" at hearing some of the more shocking exchanges between the candidates, like when Trump said Clinton should be in jail.

"They thought they were ready for everything," Raddatz said. "I'm not sure anybody was ready for that."
— Tasneem Nashrulla

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OK AMERICA! Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton held the most surreal U.S. presidential debate in modern history (and probably ever) Sunday night.

Settle in folks, we're gonna unpack this thing for you.

CLICK. HERE. 👀

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Among Donald Trump's many promises, boasts and threats on Sunday night, one stood out to many debate watchers: If he was in charge, "You would be in jail," he told Hillary Clinton.

"There has never been so many lies, so many deceptions," he said. "There has never been anything like it, and we're going to have a special prosecutor."

The threat to jail political opponents is often thrown around in the world's dictatorships and pseudo-democracies. Many of the world's most repressive regimes even follow through on it. But it's a threat Americans have not heard from a presidential candidate in their lifetimes.

"This is what they do in banana republics," said Bob Schieffer, the 79-year-old CBS News contributor and veteran debate moderator, who has interviewed every American president since Richard Nixon. "People keep asking me if I've ever seen anything like this and I keep saying 'no.'"

For more reaction, go here.

—Emma Loop and Tom Gara

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ST. LOUIS, Missouri — Donald Trump started Sunday's debate looking like he might die: Sniffling, reeling, lurking, obviously rattled by Hillary Clinton's early poise.

But when the night ended, Trump was still standing — and Republican strategists across the party grudgingly acknowledged that, for better or worse, it would be his name on the ballot come November.

The debate came at a moment when Trump's candidacy was spiraling into crisis after the release of an 11-year-old video in which he is heard boasting about his habit of forcibly groping women. In the 48 hours since the video was published, dozens of high-profile Republicans have defected, with many calling on Trump to drop out of the race. Frenzied news reports suggested the Republican National Committee might pull its funding, that Trump's campaign manager might quit, that his running-mate might bolt.

For a fleeting period this weekend, it looked as if the GOP's presidential nominee could possibly be forced out of the race a month before Election Day.

While Trump's discursive, belligerent debate performance was a far from the miraculous comeback his allies were praying for, Republicans said Sunday night it was non-catastrophic enough to stabilize the party and save him from outright exile — at least for now.

"Trump stopped the bleeding with a strong second half of the debate, but he lost too many pints of it over the weekend," said Sarah Isgur-Flores, who served as Carly Fiorina's deputy campaign manager.

Read more here.

—McKay Coppins

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ST. LOUIS — Early on in Sunday's debate, a fly drifted into the frame and came to rest, just for a moment, at the base of Hillary Clinton's left eyebrow.

She blinked, flicked her head, and kept talking.

This was the Democratic nominee's posture for more than an hour and a half here at Washington University in St. Louis as Donald Trump put on one of the more hostile performances of this year's divisive presidential race. He called his opponent the "devil," said she had "tremendous hate in her heart." He vowed to put her in prison raised her husband's infidelities, and brought women who alleged he sexually abused them into the debate hall. He paced the stage as she spoke. He lied about his opposition to the war in Iraq and asserted that had he been president, the late Captain Humayun Khan would still be alive.

When the debate was halfway through, one of Clinton's aides back in Brooklyn snapped. "hey, @realDonaldTrump — regarding your claim that Captain Khan would be alive if you were president," tweeted spokesperson Jesse Lehrich.

"go fuck yourself."

The harsh tweet, which Lehrich later apologized for, amounted to what Clinton managed to largely avoid in the second presidential debate, a town hall-style forum that finally brought forth some of the personal attacks Trump has vowed to make for weeks.

Read more here.

—Ruby Cramer

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Just 27 really, really good tweets about debate hero Ken Bone

KENNETH BONE IS HERE TO REMIND U IT’S SWEATER WEATHER

Ken Bone, the man who brought a little love to an otherwise scorched earth debate stage. The internet responded in kind.

Kenneth Bone is the therapist this country needs

For more of the Ken Bone love, go here.

—Julia Reinstein

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Trump said he would appoint a special prosecutor to investigate Clinton's emails should he win. Clinton responded by saying it's "awfully good that someone with the temperament of Donald Trump is not in charge of the law in our country."

"Because you'd be in jail," Trump responded.

Trump's threat to lock up a political enemy puts him in the company of authoritarian leaders around the world. For some of the world leaders who have followed through and jailed an opponent after an election, fueling outrage around the globe, go here.

—Sheera Frenkel and Hayes Brown

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WASHINGTON — In talking about the Supreme Court on Sunday night, Hillary Clinton did not even name President Obama's nominee, Judge Merrick Garland, in discussing the high court.Donald Trump didn't even acknowledge that there is a pending nomination.

Asked at Sunday night's contentious debate what they would prioritize in selecting a Supreme Court justice, Clinton didn't mention Obama's nominee until the final portion of her answer.

"I regret deeply that the Senate has not done its job and they have not permitted a vote on the person that President Obama — a highly qualified person — they've not given him a vote to be able to be have the full complement of nine Supreme Court justices," Clinton said toward the end of her answer about important aspects of selecting a Supreme Court justice.

Clinton did, however, say more about Obama's nominee than Trump did.

"Justice Scalia, great judge, died recently," Trump said of Antonin Scalia's death in February. "And we have a vacancy."

For more on the candidate's answers, go here.

—Chris Geidner

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Yes, literally just photos of people watching the debate because at least one of them was you.

Find your spirit person here.

—Tanya Chen

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Trump and Clinton on stage of the debate was the stuff of karaoke dreams

That 2am karaoke duet at the local dive bar. #Debate

On Sunday around 9 pm, candidates Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton assumed positions on stage that looked like, yes, a classic karaoke duet!

It would be one of America's most epic karaoke nights, and people were ready for it.

For more karaoke fanfic, go here.

—Ema O'Connor

I'm sorry Ms. Jackson, I am for real Never meant to make your daughter cry I apologize a trillion times

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During the second, highly-tense presidential debate Sunday, Donald Trump referenced Canada's health care while trying to criticize Hillary Clinton's health care plan.

"She wants to go to a single-payer plan, which would be a disaster, somewhat similar to Canada," Trump said.

He then went on to imply that Canadians are so upset with their health care system, they cross the border to the US to get their service.

"And if you haven't noticed the Canadians, when they need a big operation, when something happens, they come into the United States in many cases because their system is so slow," he further explained.

Meanwhile, Canadians, who were innocuously watching the debate and just here for a good time, honestly felt so attacked.

Canadians watching the #debate right now like:

For more reaction, go here.

—Tanya Chen

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Donald Trump's campaign manager said some members of Congress who refused to support the Republican candidate after the release of a tape of him making lewd statements about women have sexually harassed women themselves.

Kellyanne Conway spoke with MSNBC's Chris Matthews following Sunday's presidential debate. In the debate, Trump said he had never grabbed women by the "pussy" — a claim he made in 2005 to Access Hollywood's Billy Bush. Trump on Sunday characterized the comment as "locker room talk."

Following the release of the tape, a laundry list of Republicans rebuked Trump or announced they were formally revoking their support. On Sunday night, Conway reiterated that Trump respected woman — and added that those who were criticizing him were hypocrites.

"I would talk to some of the members of Congress out there," Conway said. "When I was younger and prettier, them rubbing up against girls, sticking their tongues down women's throats uninvited who didn't like it."

"Some of them them, by the way, are on the list of people who won't support Donald Trump, because they all ride around on their high horse," she continued.

Read more here.

—Claudia Koerner

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ST. LOUIS — The Republican National Committee was unaware of the Trump campaign's plan to hold a public event with Bill Clinton accusers here and invite them to the debate, its chief strategist said on Sunday.

RNC chief strategist and communications director Sean Spicer told reporters after Sunday night's debate that the RNC had not known about the move to bring the women to St. Louis and to the debate hall.

"I think tonight was about the debate, I think that's where the focus was and I think he did a good job," Spicer said when asked whether he thought Trump had done the right thing in inviting the women.

"I think tonight was about the debate, and that's what the focus was and that's what millions of Americans were tuning in to see and they got a clear winner," Spicer said.Spicer appeared to downplay the women's presence, saying "the guests were invited, he pointed them out, but that was not what 90 minutes were focused on."

Spicer said RNC chairman Reince Priebus had not interacted with the women.

Read more here.

—Rosie Gray

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The debate backdrop was not afraid to speak its damn mind on Sunday.

Behold:

For more, go here.

—Hannah Jewell

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The UK's lead pro-Brexit politician, Nigel Farage, said Donald Trump dominated Hillary Clinton during the debate like "silverback gorilla."

In the spin room, Nigel Farrage just compared Trump to a "silverback gorilla." "He dominated her."

Farage, a staunch Trump supporter, has been the leader of the UK Independence Party and was the leading voice behind the public vote for Britain to leave the European Union, also known as Brexit.

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During Sunday's presidential debate, Donald Trump spoke about his "Muslim ban," a proposed policy he referred to as "extreme vetting from certain areas of the world."

He added that Americans "have to be sure that Muslims come in and report when they see something going on."

"When they see hatred going on, they have to report it," he said.

So, Moustafa Bayoumi, an author and professor at Brooklyn College, did just that.

I'm a Muslim, and I would like to report a crazy man threatening a woman on a stage in Missouri. #debate

For the 🔥 reaction, go here.

—Julia Reinstein

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At one point in the second presidential debate Sunday night, Donald Trump was given the chance to discuss what should've been a good topic for him: Hillary Clinton's paid speeches.

A few transcripts from the speeches Clinton gave behind closed doors — which the campaign has refused to release in the past — were leaked on Friday afternoon by Wikileaks.

Clinton had said that a quote in her speech about having private opinions and public opinions was a reference to Lincoln, and then went on to use the 2012 film Lincoln as an analogy for her "principled and … strategic" methods for getting legislation passed.

She had also noted in the debate that on Friday, the Department of Homeland Security and Director of National Intelligence publicly accused Russia of being the source of hacks on the Democratic National Convention and of attempting to influence the US election.

And that's where Trump went off.

Read more here.

—Hayes Brown

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We can all agree Martha Raddatz and Anderson Cooper had one of the toughest jobs as moderators of the town hall presidential debate.

But they were tough, and they wouldn't back down. And people loved it.

God bless @andersoncooper and @MarthaRaddatz for maintaining civility while my emotional status was... #debate

For more of the love, go here.

—Sarah Burton

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Donald Trump praised Hillary Clinton for fighting hard and never giving up after months of criticizing her low energy and lack of stamina.

Asked if he could name one respectable trait in his opponent, Trump said that Clinton "does fight hard, and she doesn't quit, and she doesn't give up."

"I will say this about Hillary," he said. "She doesn't quit. She doesn't give up. I respect that. I tell it like it is. She is a fighter."

But at the pair's prior face-off on Sept. 26, Trump took the opposite position, stating, "She doesn't have the stamina, I said she doesn't have the stamina, and I don't believe she does have the stamina."

Two weeks before at a rally in Ohio, and after Clinton briefly came down with pneumonia, Trump asked, "You think Hillary would be able to stand up here for an hour and do this? I don't think so."

But her illness had not been the beginning of that line of attack. In July, the Wall Street Journal reported that he'd said at a Virginia rally, "She's low energy. She actually is low energy… She'll go home, she'll take a nap for four or five hours and then she'll come back."

And in December, Trump said, "I'm saying she's not strong enough. No, no, not a health issue, I say she's not strong enough to be president," The Hill reported about his appearance on Fox News' Media Buzz.

For her part, Clinton answered the same question about a respectable trait see saw in Trump.

"I respect his children. His children are incredibly able and devoted, and I think that says a lot about Donald," she said.

—Dominic Holden

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The RNC was apparently unaware of Trump's plan to hold a pre-debate news conference with Clinton accusers

.@seanspicer tells reporters the RNC was not aware of Trump's decision to hold an event with Clinton accusers and invite them to the debate

Prior to the debate Sunday, Trump appeared with four Bill Clinton sexual assault accusers at a news conference, during which they pledged their support for the Republican nominee.

The Republican National Committee apparently was unaware of that plan.

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After skipping the tradition handshake at the opening of the debate, Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton finally shook on it at the close a fiery town hall debate on Sunday.

Everything is fine.

—Jason Wells

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People are calling this guy the real winner of the debate

This guy is so done with the Donald. #debates

Fact: There was a lot of clutter, noise, and actual yelling during the second presidential debate. One may say there were NO winners that came out on top of the rubble.

But amid all the clutter, people found one man at the debates they could actually relate to.

While Trump was answering a question and looked out to the audience, one man looked back at him — no, one man glared back at him.

Read the fan reaction here.

—Tanya Chen

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Clinton said the humanitarian crisis in Syria is "catastrophic" and took aim at Russia

"There is a determined effort by the Russian air force to destroy Aleppo in order to eliminate the last of the Syrian rebels who are really holding out against the Assad regime," she said.

"Russia hasn't paid any attention to ISIS," Clinton added.

She said she would try to protect civilians by establishing no-fly and safe zones. She said she would also stand-up to Putin. "I've stood up to Putin and others and I would do that as president," Clinton said, adding that she cooperated with Russia in placing sanctions on the Iranian nuclear program.

Trump responded by saying Clinton "talks tough against Russia," but that the US nuclear program "has fallen way behind and they've gone wild with their nuclear program.

"Not good," Trump said. "Our government shouldn't have allowed that to happen."

He also criticized Clinton for wanting to hand leadership of Syria to armed rebels who "end up being worse," than the old regime, comparing the situation to Libya.

"I don't like Assad at all but Russia is killing ISIS, Assad is killing ISIS, and Iran and those three have now lined up because of our weak foreign policy," Trump said.

video-cdn.buzzfeed.com

Raddatz then asked Trump to answer the original question about what he would do to solve the humanitarian crisis in Syria. Raddatz also reminded Trump that Pence said during the vice-presidential debate last week that he believes "provocations by Russia need to be met with American strength" and that if Russia and the Syrian government continue these airstrikes, the US should respond with military force.

"OK," Trump said, "he and I haven't spoken and I disagree. You have to knock out ISIS."

Trump then criticized the US for, in some cases, announcing future targets for airstrikes.

"Let me tell you something," he said. "Take a look at Mosul. The biggest problem I have with the stupidity of our foreign policy, we have Mosul, they think a lot of the ISIS leaders are there. So we have announcements coming out, we will be attacking Mosul in three or four weeks and all these bad leaders from ISIS are leaving Mosul. Why can't they do it quietly, make it a sneak attack and after the attack is made inform the American public that we've knocked out leaders, had a tremendous success? Why do they say we're going to be attacking Mosul in the next four to six weeks? How stupid our country?"

Raddatz then said that sometimes there are reasons, such as psychological warfare or to allow civilians to escape, the military announces the attacks in advance.

Trump responded that he has "20 generals and admirals" who've endorsed him.

Emma Loop

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Donald Trump's Twitter account became one of the top search results on Twitter when looking up the hashtag #rapeculture on Sunday night during the second presidential debate.

Early in the debate, Trump was asked about recently revealed comments he made in 2005 wherein he said his celebrity status allows him to kiss women without consent and "grab them by the pussy." Trump said he was embarrassed by it.

"This was locker room talk," Trump said in the debate. "I apologize to my family and to the American people. Certainly I'm not proud of it. … I hate it but it's locker room talk and it's one of those things."

Sexual assault survivors, activists and victims' advocates quickly responded on Twitter by pointing out that Trump's excusing of his comments as "locker room talk" is an example of rape culture. Mindy Finn, an independent vice presidential candidate with Evan McMullin, chimed in by saying on Twitter, "Glorifying sexual assault is not #lockerroomtalk."

Read more here.

—Tyler Kingkade

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Trump denied urging the public to check out former Miss Universe's "sex tape," despite the Twitter receipt

Donald Trump: "It wasn't 'check out a sex tape' it was take a look at this person she built up“ (check out sex tap… https://t.co/GfX0Uy31If

Anderson Cooper asked Trump about his Twitter activity, including telling his followers to look at the "sex tape" made by former Miss Universe Alicia Machado, who appeared in a Clinton campaign video talking about her negative experiences with Republican nominee.

Trump, however, denied making the sex tape comment.

"No, it wasn't 'check out a sex tape,'" Trump said.

Instead, Trump claimed, he was telling his followers to look at "the kind of person" Machado was, because, he said, Clinton was making her out to be "such a good person."

However, here's the original tweet for reference:

Did Crooked Hillary help disgusting (check out sex tape and past) Alicia M become a U.S. citizen so she could use her in the debate?

Trump then went on to talk about why he tweets at 3 a.m., saying that it proves he, as president, will be awake at any time to answer the 3 a.m. call.

"Between Facebook and Twitter I have almost 25 million people. It's a very effective way of communication," Trump concluded. "You can put it down, but it's a very effective form of communication. I'm not unproud of it to be honest with you."

—Ema O'Connor

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"Aleppo has already fallen," Trump falsely declared during the debate on Sunday night. The fight for Aleppo is currently ongoing, where the Russian and Syrian air forces are bombarding the eastern half of the city, which remains in rebel control. Some 275,000 civilians are still in place inside Aleppo and casualties are going untreated thanks to the targeting of hospitals and other health centers.

The Republican candidate during the exchange also said that "Syria is no longer Syria; it's Russia, it's Iran," citing the Obama administration as the cause of the alliance between the three countries.

"Right now, Syria is fighting ISIS," he also said, despite evidence that the Syrian government and Russian forces are largely targeting the rebels that are a threat to President Bashar al-Assad's rule. They have also indiscriminately attacked civilians, including hospitals and a humanitarian convoy.

—Hayes Brown

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Donald Trump denied Sunday evening during the second presidential debate that he hasn't sexually assaulted women by grabbing them "by the pussy" and kissing them against their will — as he said he did in a 2005 hot mic recording.

That response was in the middle of the effectively surreal first portion of the debate, which was unlike any in modern history.

It began when Trump was asked whether he would be an appropriate role model of appropriate behavior — questions underscored by his 2005 comments — by minimizing the behavior, shifting to military strength, and attacking former president Bill Clinton.

"I don't think you understand that this was locker room talk. I apologize to my family and to the American people," he said. "Certainly I'm not proud of it. This is locker room talk and when you have a world where ISIS is chopping off heads, drowning people in steel cages where you have wars and horrible, horrible sights all over."

Read more here.

—Ema O'Connor and Dom Holden

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Clinton defends statements in paid speeches by citing Abraham Lincoln

Clinton said leaked documents that include excerpts of her paid speeches to Wall Street banks simply showed her praising Abraham Lincoln, adding that email hacks behind the leak were apparently perpetrated by Russia in order to elect Trump.

"They're not doing it to get me elected," said Clinton. "They're doing it to try to influence the election for Donald Trump."

Trump, in turn, attempted to simultaneously distance him from Russian President Vladmir Putin while nonetheless stating, "I think it would be great if we got along with Russia because we could fight ISIS together."

Wikileaks on Friday released emails from Clinton campaign Chairman John Podesta, including a speech in which Clinton noted, "You need both a public and a private position."

"Well, as I recall that was something I said about Abraham Lincoln after having seen the wonderful Steven Spielberg movie called Lincoln," Clinton said. "It was a master class watching president Lincoln get the Congress to approve the 13th amendment… President Lincoln was trying to convince some people, he used some arguments, convincing other people he used other arguments. That was a great."

She added that the US intelligence community recently announced that "the Kremlin, meaning Putin and the Russian government, are directing the hacks…to influence our election."

"Maybe because [Trump] has praised Putin," she speculated. "Maybe because he says he agrees with a lot of what Putin wants to do, maybe because he wants to do business."

Trump countered that Clinton instead "got caught in a total lie" with the email hack. He seemed to suggest the documents reveal Clinton's coziness with "all her friends at the banks."

He added, "She lied and now she's blaming the lie on the late, great Abraham Lincoln. Honest Abe never lied. I notice any time anything wrong happens they like to say it's the Russians. They don't know but they always blame Russia because they think they're trying to tarnish me with Russia. I know nothing about Russia."
—Dominic Holden

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People had some thoughts about Trump's "locker room talk" explanation

Moderator: Mr. Trump, can you show us what happens in the locker room? #debate

Donald Trump dismissed his comments in 2005 in which he refers to grabbing women "by the pussy" as "locker room talk" during the debate on Sunday. And people had some thoughts on Twitter.

Read some choice ones here.

—Ema O'Connor

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Trump wobbles on his federal income taxes

When Anderson Copper asked Trump directly if he used his $916 million loss in 1995 to avoid paying federal income taxes for nearly two decades. Trump at first responded, "Of course I do, so do many of [Clinton's] donors."

Trump then bounced back and forth between saying that he pays "a tremendous number of taxes" and then admitting to taking "tax write-offs," calling the write-offs "a wonderful thing" and blaming Clinton for their existence.

"A lot of my write-off was depreciations that Hillary as a senator allowed and will always allow because the people that give her all this money want it," Trump said. "But I will tell you number one, I pay tremendous numbers of taxes."

Cooper then asked Trump if he could say exactly how many years he avoided paying federal income taxes. He said no.

—Ema O'Connor

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Hillary Clinton said she wanted to be clear the US was not at war with Islam, while Donald Trump said his original plan to ban Muslims immigrants had evolved to be "extreme vetting."

Trump also said he could have prevented the death of an American Muslim soldier whose family he had previously criticized. Trump said Capt. Humayun Khan died in 2004 in Iraq, and his father criticized Trump during the Democratic National Convention, saying that Republican nominee did not uphold the ideals of the US Constitution.

"I would not have had our people in Iraq," Trump said. "Iraq was a disaster. He would have been alive today. The Muslim ban is something that in some form has morphed into extreme vetting from certain areas."

Trump told Howard Stern in 2002 that he supported invading Iraq. He later changed his position and also continues to claim he has always been against the Iraq war.

Clinton, in contrast, said the path to defeating ISIS and "violent jihadist terrorists" was to partner with Muslim countries and also show support of American Muslims.

"What Donald Trump says about Muslims is used to recruit fighters," she said. "Because they want to create a war between us."

—Claudia Koerner

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During the debate on Sunday, people thought it was really weird, and creepy, the way Donald Trump was standing right behind Hillary Clinton when she spoke.

People called him a "hoverer," stalker, and just straight up creepy.

Read more of the reaction here.

—Michelle Broder Van Dyke

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Donald Trump again reiterated his false claim that he has always been against the Iraq War, a claim that has been debunked by BuzzFeed News.

"It has not been debunked. I was against the war in Iraq," Trump insisted on Sunday.

Read the true story about what he said in 2002 here.

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Fact Check: Trump's Syrian refugees comment is wrong

Trump's assertion that the US took in "tens of thousands" of Syrian refugees is not accurate. On August 29, 2016, the White House announced it had taken in exactly 10,000 Syrian refugees. Between 2011, when violence in Syria first erupted, and 2015, the total number of refugees the US took in from Syria was under 1,500.
—Sheera Frenkel

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Trump interrupted Clinton SIX times in under a minute, despite the moderators begging him to stop.

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Trump falsely claims Clinton is proposing Canada-style healthcare system

Donald Trump said that Hillary Clinton wants to introduce a single-payer healthcare system like in Canada, and that Canadians frequently come to America for health procedures because the Canadian system is too slow.

It is true that some Canadians come to the United States for non-urgent surgeries to avoid wait times. However, Clinton is not proposing a Canadian-style healthcare system. In fact, Bernie Sanders was proposing such a system and Clinton argued against it.

—Paul McLeod

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Trump told Clinton that if he wins the election, he will order the attorney general "to get a special prosecutor to look into your situation because there has never been so many lies, so many deceptions, there has never been anything like it, and we're going to have a special prosecutor."

Trump had been criticizing Clinton over the State Department emails she stored on a private server the Democratic nomination, which he claimed Clinton did not win "fair and square, in my opinion."

"All you have to do is take a look at Wikileaks and see what they said about Bernie Sanders and see what Deborah Wasserman Schultz — Schultz had in mind," Trump said. "Bernie Sanders never had a chance. I was so surprised to see him sign on with the devil."

Trump said people he's spoken with in the country "are furious" over Clinton's email scandal. He said "there has never been anything like this" where 33,000 emails were deleted after a subpoena from the attorney general.

"And then you acid wash them or bleach them as you would say, a very expensive process," Trump said. "So we're going to get a special prosecutor and we're going to look into it because you know what?

"People have been, their lives have been destroyed for doing one fifth of what you have done and it's a disgrace," Trump told Clinton. "Honestly you ought to be ashamed of yourself."

Clinton responded by saying that everything Trump said "is absolutely false," and urged viewers to visit her website to fact-check the claims.

"I expect we'll have millions more fact checking," Clinton said, "because, you know, it's just awfully good that someone with the temperament of Donald Trump is not in charge of the law in our country."

Trump retorted, "Because you would be in jail."

—Emma Loop

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Fact Check: Trump falsely says Muslims aren't reporting terror pots

Donald Trump once again falsely claimed that Muslims in the United States are not reporting terror plots to the authorities, citing San Bernardino, California, where he said there were "bombs on the floor" of the suspects' apartment.

There has never been any evidence that this was the case.

For more on the false claim, read here.

—Hayes Brown

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In a notable shift, Hillary Clinton pivoted her defense of her use of a private email server to send communications while she was Secretary of State.

Clinton had previously held a firm line, that she had never received or sent information that was marked classified — a defense that carefully parsed words. The FBI found that, indeed, Clinton had sent and received information that was designated as top-secret.

But that information did not contain the headers that traditionally designate classified information in government systems. At Sunday night's debate, however, Clinton defended her use of the private server in slightly different terms that made a significant difference.

When attacked by Republican nominee Donald Trump for her use of the private server, Clinton said that her use of the private server did not lead to classified information finding its way into the wrong hands, and said there was no evidence a foreign government had breached the private server.

—Ali Watkins

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Fact Check: Trump incorrectly says C stands for "classified"

Donald Trump brought up the fact that Hillary Clinton did not realize that a symbol in her emails referred to classified information.

In September, the FBI revealed in its report into her deleted emails that during an interview with Clinton, when asked what a "C" notation next to certain paragraphs, the former secretary of state "speculated it was referencing paragraphs marked in alphabetical order."

The symbol denotes that the information in the paragraph was "Confidential" — a "U" in the system stands for "Unclassified."

—Hayes Brown

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"We're going to have borders"

On Sunday night Donald Trump said the US didn't have borders.

"We're going to have borders on our country that we don't have now," Trump said.

But enforcement along the US-Mexico border has never been higher. There are currently about 21,000 agents patrolling more than 6,000 miles of the nation's borders.

The US shares 5,525 miles of border with Canada and 1,989 miles with Mexico.

The US Border Patrol budget has grown rapidly, from $263 million in 1990 to $3.8 billion in 2015. US Immigration and Customs Enforcement has also been growing, from about $3.5 billion in 2005 to $6 billion in 2014.

At the same time border apprehensions are down from a peak in 2000 at 1.6 million. In 2015 Border Patrol reported 337,117 people apprehended trying to cross the border, a decrease of 30% from the previous year and, with the exception of one year, the lowest in more than 40 years.

The Associated Press reported that immigration authorities caught just over half of the people who illegally entered the U.S. from Mexico last year. The information came from an unreleased Department of Homeland Security report.

—Adolfo Flores

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Trump defends 2005 lewd comments about women as "locker room talk"

Donald Trump said he had not grabbed women by their genitals as he was recorded saying in a 2005 video.

Anderson Cooper summarized the statements in the Access Hollywood tape, which was first publicized on Friday. He pointed out that Trump's statement that he can "grab [women] by the pussy" was sexual assault, and he asked if Trump had ever done what his words described.

"No, I have not," Trump said.

Trump added that the statements were "locker room talk."

"I'm not proud of it," he said, adding that no one respect women as much as he does and that men like Bill Clinton were more abusive.

In response, Hillary Clinton said Trump was not fit to be president, and the 2005 tape was only one example.

"We have seen him insult women, we've seen him rate women on their appearance, rank them from 1 to 10, we've seen him embarrass women on TV and on Twitter," Clinton said.

Pressed later on to clarify his defense, he told the audience:

"As I told you, that was locker room talk. I'm not proud of it. I am a person who has great respect for people, for my family, for the people of this country and certainly I'm not proud of it.

"But that was something that happened, if you look at bill Clinton, mine are words and his were action. His was what he's done to women. There's never been anybody in the history of politics in this nation that's been so abusive to women.

"So you can say it any way you want to say it, Bill Clinton was abusive to women. Hillary Clinton attacked those same women and attacked them viciously."

—Dominic Holden

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Here's Bill Clinton and Melania Trump arriving for tonight's debate. (It was pretty damn tense).

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Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton skipped the traditional handshake at the outset of the second presidential debate on Sunday, instead nodding as they took the stage.

Prior to the debate, Trump hosted a press conference featuring four women who have accused Bill Clinton of sexual assault.

—Jason Wells

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MGM, which purchased The Apprentice executive producer Mark Burnett's studio in 2005, did not respond to BuzzFeed News requests on Sunday asking if they will release unaired footage of Donald Trump on the show — if they have it.

Burnett faced mounting pressure to release footage after Friday's release of a 2005 hot mic video of Donald Trump apparently bragging about sexually assaulting women and trying to have sex with a married woman.

More than 20 former contestants, crew members, and editors told the Associated Press that Trump treated women on the show inappropriately, including talking about which contestants he would like to have sex with and rating them by breast size.

A source close to Burnett told BuzzFeed News that Burnett supports Trump, and has threatened his staff with a $5 million fine if the outtakes are made public.Burnett "is pro-Trump and has made clear to his teams that he will sue anyone who leaks," the person said.

It's possible, though, that the footage may not be Burnett's to release.

Read more here.

—Julia Reinstein

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ST. LOUIS — Black activists want Hillary Clinton to go on the offensive against Donald Trump, who maintained that the five New York youths convicted of rape — who were later exonerated more than a decade later — were actually guilty.

The Central Park Five were wrongfully convicted, and the case and its fallout was the subject of a 2012 documentary. Today, the case is seen as a prime example of inequities in the criminal justice system. But that didn't stop Trump from submitting a statement to CNN last week, saying the fact that the case was settled was "outrageous" given the evidence against them.

Rashad Robinson of Color of Change said that Trump's statement last week reflects his "law and order" rhetoric, that he's okay with "black folks behind bars or on death row" with no regard of their innocence. "For the movements of black and brown folks who see a need to stop Trump but struggle with Clinton, the Central Park Five speaks not just to the harm done by a racist system, but what could happen under a Trump presidency".

Read more here.

—Darren Sands

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Donald Trump once said his reputation for surrounding himself with beautiful, glamorous women would make it difficult for him to run for political office.

Trump made the comments during a 1993 interview with New Zealand television channel TV3 that was uncovered by the website Newshub. The New Zealand website reported Trump was visiting Auckland for one day to apply for a casino license.

"A lot of people have this image have this image of you as a high-rolling tycoon associated with glamorous women, is that the sort of image you enjoy of yourself?" the reporter asked Trump.

"No, I don't enjoy that image," Trump responded. "I guess I have that image."

"I think women are beautiful – I think certain women are more beautiful than others, to be perfectly honest — and it is fortunate that I don't have to run for political office.

Read more here.
—David Mack

Trump on his womanizing image in 1993: “It’s fortunate that I don't have to run for political office"

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Trump holds news conference with women who claim Bill Clinton assaulted them

Facebook: video.php

An hour and a half before of the second presidential debate, Trump held a Facebook Live event with four women who have accused former President Bill Clinton of sexual abuse.

One of the women was Juanita Broaddrick, who accused and has maintained her accusation for decades that Bill Clinton sexually assaulted her in 1978.

Trump announced his special livestream event with a tweet stating this concludes his "final debate preparations."

Join me on #FacebookLive as I conclude my final #debate preparations. https://t.co/gAbNvI8Fd7

"I'm here to support Donald Trump," Broaddrick opened her statement as the camera shifts to her at the live panel. "Actions speak louder than words. Mr. Trump may have said some bad words, but Bill Clinton raped me, and Hillary Clinton threatened me. I don't think there's any comparison."

Kathy Shelton, the woman who called Hillary Clinton a liar after she defended her alleged rapist in 1975, said, "I, at 12 years old, Hillary put me through something you'd never put a 12 year old through."

"You went through a lot," Trump responded to her comments.

Trump then quickly ended the event, bypassing press questions.

The accusers are reportedly sitting in the audience — not where the questioners sit, but where the spectators sit.

Trump ignores pool q before the women start speaking, "Mr. Trump, does your star power allow you to touch women without their consent?"

Clinton aides were apparently blindsided by Trump's event.

Clinton aides here were just as blindsided as everyone else by Donald Trump's debate press avail with Bill Clinton's accusers.

Shelton later tweeted, "Donald J. Trump took the time today to meet and stand up for me & other abused women by the Clintons. Thank you @realdonaldtrump" and Trump campaign manager responded with "Profile in courage. God bless you."

Donald J. Trump took the time today to meet and stand up for me & other abused women by the Clintons. Thank you @realdonaldtrump - #debate

Profile in courage. God bless you. https://t.co/q14VEvgvlF

The Clinton campaign issued this statement:

We're not surprised to see Donald Trump continue his destructive race to the bottom. Hillary Clinton understands the opportunity in this town hall is to talk to voters on stage and in the audience about the issues that matter to them, and this stunt doesn't change that. If Donald Trump doesn't see that, that's his loss. As always, she's prepared to handle whatever Donald Trump throws her way.

Tanya Chen

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Sources close to Mike Pence told the IndyStar that there is no talk yet in the GOP vice presidential candidate's campaign of leaving the ticket, though Donald Trump's performance in tonight's debate might influence his decision.

Pence was quick to rebuke his running mate's 2005 comments about sexually assaulting women, and his upcoming campaign trail appearances were soon cancelled.

The Indiana Governor is considering the "long-term best interest of the Republican Party," the source said. "Everything is on the table, but the assumption is that they will plan to stay in the saddle with Trump if he performs halfway well tonight."

Many high profile Republican politicians have called for Trump to step aside and let Pence to take over the presidential candidacy, though Pence has not yet addressed these requests. Others have called for Pence to leave the ticket entirely to distance himself from Trump and maintain his good reputation among conservatives.

Pence will watch the debate from his home in Indianapolis.

— Ema O'Connor

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Billy Bush, a co-host of NBC's "Today Show", will miss his regularly scheduled appearance on his show on Monday, has been suspended from the show.

It was reported earlier that he would use his appearance on the show Monday to further address his participation in the leaked 2005 footage of Trump describing on a hot mic sexually assaulting women and attempting to seduce a married woman — Bush's co-host on Access Hollywood at the time, Nancy O'Dell.

A Today executive told staff that "NBC has decided to suspend Billy, pending further review," according to a memo obtained by the Huffington Post's Michael Calderone:

Bush publicly apologized for laughing at Trump's remarks, including Trump saying he could "do anything" to women including "grab them by the pussy."

Bush also encouraged Trump's co-star in his cameo to give Trump a hug shortly after they discussed in an objectifying manner how attractive she was, and after Trump said that he often "can't help" but kiss beautiful women without asking.

Bush publicly apologized for his comments in a statement released Friday:

"Obviously I'm embarrassed and ashamed. It's no excuse, but this happened 11 years ago — I was younger, less mature, and acted foolishly in playing along. I'm very sorry."

Bush has received an outpouring of criticism since the footage was released, and momentarily deleted his Twitter account.

Bush is the cousin of former President George W. Bush and Jeb Bush, who ran against Trump in the GOP primaries.

He was involved in controversy earlier this year, when he was one of the first to report that Olympic swimmer Ryan Lochte had been robbed at gunpoint. It quickly came to light that Lochte had fabricated to whole event and lied to Bush about it on camera. Bush later defended Lochte.

Ema O'Connor

Read More Here.

"Today" show EP says “no excuse for Billy’s language and behavior” in memo announcing suspension

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These are 20 recent Clinton and Trump claims fact-checked by PolitiFact. For each claim, swipe left if you think the candidate's statement is false, or swipe right if you think it's true.

Check it out here.

—Jeremy Singer Vine

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The head of a pro-Clinton SuperPAC suggested Sunday that he would cover the legal expenses of staffers on the show "The Apprentice" who leak damaging footage of Donald Trump.

"If a $5 million 'leak fee' is what stands between truth and total Trump implosion, sign me up," said David Brock, the founder of American Bridge and a leading Clinton ally, in an email to BuzzFeed News.

Read the full story here.

–Jessica Simeone

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President Obama on Sunday addressed for the first time a 2005 tape in which Donald Trump suggested he sexually assaults women by trying to "grab them by the pussy," as well as his failed attempt to have sex with a married woman.

Obama called Trump insecure, saying it wasn't a trait suited for serving in the Oval Office.

The tape, from a 2005 episode of Access Hollywood, was released Friday by the Washington Post.

"I don't need to repeat it," Obama said of Trump's comments in the video. "There's children in the room."

Read the full story here.

–Claudia Koerner

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Here is a photo of Marco Rubio giving Donald Trump tic tacs during the Republican presidential primary debates in South Carolina in February.

Because, you know, it seemed pertinent.

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House Speaker Paul Ryan did not address the fallout surrounding Donald Trump's 2005 comments about groping women, but he reiterated his support for Trump and said he had a "tremendous opportunity" at Sunday night's showdown with Hillary Clinton.

"This is the town hall format, and I think it gives an opportunity to connect individually with citizens," Ryan told radio host and former New York mayoral candidate John Catsimatidis on Sunday, the day after speaking to a contentious crowd in his home state of Wisconsin. "I think this gives Donald a tremendous opportunity to do that."

Asked what advice he would give Trump hours before the critical debate, Ryan said, "I think Mike Pence set the tone the right way. I think Mike Pence showed what we can accomplish and what our principles are."

Check out the full story here.

–Nathaniel Meyersohn

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So, Jon Voight has some thoughts about Robert DeNiro's anti-Trump video

I am so ashamed of my fellow actor Bobby DeNiro's rant against Donald Trump. What foul words he used against a presidential nominee. cont'd

Check out the full story here.

–Sheridan Watson

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A powerful Hollywood ally of Donald Trump has threatened staffers who could release potentially damaging outtakes of the show, a source close to Mark Burnett told BuzzFeed News.

Burnett, the producer of The Apprentice, and his production company have not responded to requests for comment from BuzzFeed News and many other outlets since grotesque outtakes from another show rocked Trump's campaign Friday, even as former staffers have suggested on Twitter (without clear evidence) that The Apprentice material could be just as damaging.

But the person familiar with Burnett's thinking told BuzzFeed News that the producer is backing his star.

Burnett "is pro-Trump and has made clear to his teams that he will sue anyone who leaks," the person said.

Read the full story here.

–Julia Reinstein

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The leaked video of Donald Trump's lecherous musings had only been on the internet for a few hours Friday when the Mormon backlash began.

"I'm out," Utah congressman Jason Chaffetz told a local news anchor in Salt Lake City. "I can no longer in good conscience endorse this person for president. It is some of the most abhorrent and offensive comments that you can possibly imagine."

The interview made Chaffetz the first Republican in Congress to officially retract his endorsement of Trump, and by next day he would be joined by dozens of his colleagues across the country. But in Utah, conservative Mormons were already mounting a wide-scale revolt against their party's nominee — a repudiation so swift and severe that some GOP insiders believe the deep-red state could be thrown into contention in the final weeks of the race.

Utah Gov. Gary Herbert called Trump's comments in the leaked video "offensive" and "despicable," and announced on Twitter Friday night that he would not longer vote for him.Jon Huntsman, the state's former governor, told the Salt Lake Tribune that Trump should cede his spot on the ticket to his running mate Mike Pence.

And Sen. Mike Lee — who has been one of the most persistent and outspoken critics of Trump on the right — posted a video recorded at his home in Utah calling on the candidate to drop out of the race.

Read the full story here.

McKay Coppins

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