The Latest: Trump says ‘everybody protects each other’ in DC


WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on the presidential race (all times local):

1:25 p.m.

Donald Trump is suggesting Washington politicians in both parties collude to keep themselves out of legal trouble.

Trump at a rally Wednesday in battleground Florida criticized the Department of Justice’s refusal to recommend charges against Hillary Clinton for blending personal and official business on a homebrew email server. He’s suggesting that both Democrats and Republicans in Congress went along with it.

“Did they make a deal where everybody protects each other in Washington?” Trump asked the crowd in Ocala.

The Republican nominee went on to call the probe “one of the great miscarriages of justice” in United States history.

Trump, increasingly isolated after the revelation of a vulgar 2005 video, has been lashing out at both parties in recent days, targeting both Clinton and House Speaker Paul Ryan, who said he would no longer campaign for the Republican presidential nominee.

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12:40 p.m.

Mike Pence is telling Christians this election is no time to “sit on the sidelines.”

Donald Trump’s running mate addressed students at Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia, as Trump took an aggressive turn against Republican leaders who have abandoned him because of his inflammatory comments about women.

Pence tells students at the evangelical college that personal “shortcomings are no excuse for inaction” and they should vote for Trump.

He says people of faith cannot choose to stand “idly by in this great national debate.”

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Noon:

Thirteen transportation, energy and environmental officials from George W. Bush’s administration have signed a statement opposing the election of Donald Trump. They say he doesn’t stand for the Republican Party’s principles.

They say they are all Republicans who have never before publicly opposed a GOP presidential nominee. A former transportation secretary, Mary Peters, and former Environmental Protection Agency administrator, Christine Todd Whitman, are among them.

The statement says that while Trump has expressed support for greatly increased infrastructure spending, he hasn’t been clear where he intends to find the money for it. Further, the statement says his support for greater spending isn’t sufficient to overcome concerns about “his capacity to govern fairly and effectively.”

Fifty former Republican national security officials signed a similar statement in August.

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11:30 a.m.

A federal judge has extended voter registration until Oct. 18 in the battleground state of Florida, due to the disruption and damage from Hurricane Matthew.

U.S. District Judge Mark Walker’s decision extends the deadline six more days. He’d already extended the Oct. 11 deadline one day, after the Florida Democratic Party filed a lawsuit on the weekend following the hurricane’s brush with Florida’s east coast.

Democrats had asked Republican Gov. Rick Scott to extend the deadline, but Scott turned down the request and said people have had enough time to register.

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10:30 A.M.

Donald Trump has one defector from the Senate back in the fold.

Republican Sen. Deb Fischer of Nebraska called just days ago for Trump to step aside because of his remarks about imposing himself on women. The conservative Republican loyalist called Trump’s comments “disgusting and totally unacceptable” and said Trump should let running mate Mike Pence serve as the party’s nominee in the election.

Now she’s reversed herself. Fischer told Nebraska radio station KLIN that it’s “not a tough choice” to keep supporting Trump. She spoke Tuesday.

Fischer’s Nebraska colleague, Sen. Ben Sasse, has attracted plenty of criticism from Republicans in the state for his long-held opposition to Trump.

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9:30 a.m.

Hillary Clinton will challenge Republicans over their support for Donald Trump during campaign events in Colorado and Nevada.

Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta says Republicans have to answer whether they are with Trump or against him, particularly as he runs what Podesta called a “race into the sewer.”

He says even those who have revoked their support for Trump following revelation of his predatory comments about women have “propped him up for a very long time.”

Podesta says Trump’s strategy appears to be trying to “disgust” voters so they don’t show up to vote.

Clinton is holding rallies Wednesday in Pueblo, Colorado, and Las Vegas.

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7:30 a.m.

Donald Trump’s campaign manager says it’s not certain he’ll follow through on his vow to appoint a special prosecutor to go after Hillary Clinton if he becomes president.

Kellyanne Conway says, “We’ll have to see, if he’s elected president, if that makes any sense.”

On ABC’s “Good Morning America,” Conway was asked Wednesday about Trump’s repeated suggestions that he’d use the power of the presidency to put Clinton behind bars for alleged misdeeds. She said, “It wouldn’t be up to him whether or not she goes to jail. That would have to be fully adjudicated through the regular channels like it would be for anyone else.”

Conway says Trump is channeling the frustrations of many people who think Clinton plays by a different set of rules.

As for Republican leaders who’ve abandoned or wavered on Trump, Conway says his campaign wants the support of anyone who will endorse Trump.

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7 a.m.

Here comes Donald Trump, unfiltered. Again.

The Republican presidential candidate is vowing to win the election his own way, as party leaders step back from him.

He declared on Fox News on Tuesday night that he’s “just tired of non-support” from Republican leaders and he “wouldn’t want to be in a foxhole with a lot of these people.”

With his campaign floundering, Trump is reverting to the combative, divisive strategy that propelled him to victory in the GOP primary. That means attacking critics — including fellow Republicans. Those close to Trump suggest it’s “open season” on every detractor, regardless of party.

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