MIAMI— Donald Trump called Hillary Clinton “very unstable” at a rally in Miami on Wednesday afternoon, a campaign event in which he went hard on the attack against the Democratic presidential nominee.
“She’s got bad judgment,” Trump said. “Personally, I think she’s a very unstable person.” He did not substantiate his claim.
The Republican nominee, without presenting specific evidence, also said Clinton “probably” received a heads-up about questions in her debates against him. He pointed to the revelation by the anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks that Donna Brazile, the interim Democratic National Committee chair, provided Democratic primary debate questions to Clinton’s campaign.
Trump also noted other unflattering releases by WikiLeaks and predicted that more damaging ones might be on the way. He also mentioned the FBI’s revived investigation into Clinton’s email practices at the State Department.
“Did you hear about this little event?” Trump said.
Trump told the crowd to vote with urgency and “pretend we’re slightly behind,” though some recent Florida polls do show him trailing Clinton. He added, “We don’t want to blow this.”
At one point, Trump appeared to single out NBC News reporter Katy Tur for criticism, as he has done before.
“We have massive crowds. There’s something happening. They’re not reporting it. Katy, you’re not reporting it, Katy. There’s something happening, Katy. There’s something happening, Katy,” Trump said.
As animosity against the media has grown at recent Trump rallies, his has added a larger buffer zone and more security between reporters and the crowds. But at the Miami rally, there was no buffer, and screaming supporters were just inches away from reporters. One man near the press pen continued screaming menacing things at “Katy” as the rally continued.
Meanwhile, President Barack Obama expressed concern in a radio interview broadcast Wednesday morning that too few African-Americans are voting this time around, and he pressed black voters to turn out for Clinton to protect the policies he has implemented.
“I’m going to be honest with you right now, because we track – we’ve got early voting, we’ve got all kinds of metrics to see what’s going on. And right now the Latino vote is up, overall vote is up, but the African-American vote right now is not as solid as it needs to be,” Obama said on “The Tom Joyner Morning Show,” a syndicated program with many African American listeners.
Obama framed the election as not only a race between Clinton and Trump but one in which his record is on the line.
“I need everybody to understand that everything we’ve done is dependent on being able to pass the baton to somebody who believes in the same things I believe in,” the president said.
To shore up support among black voters, Clinton released a new radio ad Wednesday, titled “Disrespect,” that says Trump “openly mocks the African American community.” The ad will air in Pennsylvania, Florida, Ohio and North Carolina, the Clinton campaign said.
Obama also briefly addressed for the first time the FBI’s reopened investigation into Clinton’s emails, saying in an interview with NowThis News posted Wednesday that the agency does not “operate on innuendo” and emphasizing that there is no evidence that the Democratic presidential nominee had violated the law.
Trump’s midday rally in Miami was the first of three he planned to hold in Florida on Wednesday. Clinton, who focused on Florida on Tuesday, was to campaign in Nevada and Arizona.
The Clinton campaign announced Wednesday that it is doubling its Arizona advertising investment to $1 million for the final week of the campaign. A Democratic nominee for president has not won Arizona since Bill Clinton in 1996, but polls show a competitive contest there.
The deadly shootings of two police officers in central Iowa prompted two of Hillary Clinton’s top surrogates to cancel a Wednesday campaign event in the region. Bill Clinton and vice-presidential nominee Tim Kaine would no longer hold a get-out-the-vote event in Des Moines, Clinton’s campaign announced in the morning.
The officers were shot in their squad cars in Des Moines and Urbandale. Authorities took a suspect into custody Wednesday morning.
In Miami, Trump called the shootings a “terrible tragedy.” He said that “an attack on our police is an attack on all of us.”
Trump’s children were fanning out across key battlegrounds to campaign on his behalf on Wednesday. Donald Trump Jr., Ivanka Trump, Tiffany Trump and Eric Trump were covering Colorado, North Carolina, Michigan, Ohio and Pennsylvania.
At his rally, Trump criticized both Bill and Hillary Clinton, saying, “If Hillary Clinton were to be elected, it would create an unprecedented and protracted constitutional crisis. Haven’t we just been through a lot with the Clintons? Right? Remember when he was impeached for lying? He can’t practice law, he doesn’t have the right to practice law. Didn’t we just go through this?”
As Trump spoke, a man in the crowd kept screaming, “He’s a rapist!”
Rep. Raúl Labrador, R-Idaho, was an introductory speaker at Trump’s rally. Trump seldom has Republican lawmakers appear in states other than their own. Speaking for 31/2 minutes, Labrador did not mention Trump’s name once.
“I’m here because what we need to do in this election is we need to elect somebody that can believe and does believe in the American Dream,” Labrador said, then telling the crowd about how he grew up in Puerto Rico and ended up being a Republican. Later he added, “I need you to do everything you can for the next seven days to make America great again.”
As the crowd waited in the hot sun for Trump to arrive, a local GOP official also spoke about the importance of voting for Republicans up and down the ticket – but the crowd was distracted by a woman wearing a jail jumpsuit and a Clinton mask who posed for photo after photo.
For the second rally in a row, Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus addressed Trump’s crowd, saying in Miami that while Trump is “not politically correct,” he doesn’t lie like Clinton.
“We’re in a battle for freedom,” Priebus said, “and Donald Trump will fight for our freedom.”
Sullivan reported from Washington. The Washington Post’s John Wagner in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., and Anne Gearan and David Nakamura in Washington contributed to this report.