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Donald Trump vs Hillary Clinton: Presidential candidates lock horns over economy, immigration, abortion laws & other issues

Speed News Desk | Updated on: 10 February 2017, 1:46 IST

The final face-off between the Presidential candidates Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton before the November 8 election kicked off in Las Vegas on 20 October.

Chris Wallace of Fox News, who administered the debate, asked the candidates about the Supreme Court.

Wallace: The first topic is the Supreme Court. First of all, where do you want to see the court take the country? And secondly, what's your view on how the Constitution should be interpreted? Is -- do the founders words mean what they say, or is it a living document to be applied flexibly according to changing circumstances?

Hillary Clinton:

You know, at the goings on about the Supreme Court, it really raises the central issue in this election. Namely, what kind of country are we going to be? What kind of opportunities will we provide for our citizens? What kind of rights will Americans have? And I feel strongly that the Supreme Court needs to stand on the side of the American people, not on the side of the powerful corporations and the wealthy. For me, that means that we need a Supreme Court that will stand up on behalf of of women's rights, on behalf of the rights of the LGBT community, that will stand up and say no to Citizens United, a decision that has undermined the election system in our country because of the way it permits dark, unaccountable money to come into our electoral system.

I have major disagreements with my opponent about these issues and others that will be before the Supreme Court. But I feel that at this point in our country's history, it is important that we not reverse marriage equality, that we not reverse Roe v. Wade, that we stand up against Citizens United -- we stand up for the rights of people in the workplace. That we stand up and basically say -- the Supreme Court should represent all of us. That's how I see the court. And the kind of people that I would be looking to nominate to the court would be in the great tradition of standing up to the powerful, standing on behalf of our rights as Americans. And I look forward to having the opportunity. I would hope that the Senate would do its job and confirm the nominee that President Obama has sent to them. That's the way the Constitution fundamentally should operate. The president nominates, and then the Senate advises and consents or not.

Donald Trump

The Supreme Court - it's what it's all about. Our country is so, just so imperative that we have the right justices. Something happened recently where Justice Ginsburg made some very, very inappropriate statements toward me and toward a tremendous number of people, many many millions of people that I represent. And she was forced to apologize. And apologize, she did. But these were statements that should have never, ever been made.

We need a Supreme Court that in my opinion is going to uphold the Second Amendment and all amendments. But the Second Amendment, which is under absolute siege. I believe if my opponent should win this race, which I truly don't think will happen, we will have a second amendment which will be a very, very small replica of what it is right now.

But I feel that it's absolutely important that we uphold because of the fact that it is under such trauma. I feel that the justices that I am going to appoint-- and I've named 20 of them. The justices that I'm going to appoint will be pro-life. They will have a conservative bent. They will be protecting the Second Amendment. They are great scholars in all cases, and they are people of tremendous respect. They will interpret the Constitution the way the founders wanted it interpreted. And I believe that's very, very important. I don't think we should have the justices appointed that decide what they want to hear It's all about the Constitution of -- and so important -- the Constitution, the way it was meant to be. And those are the people that I will appoint.

Wallace: Well, let's pick up on another issue which divides you and the justices that whoever ends up winning this election appoints can have a dramatic effect there and that's the issue of abortion. Mr. Trump you are pro-life. I would ask you specifically, do you want the court, including the justices that you will name, to overturn Roe V Wade which includes, in fact states, a woman's right to abortion.

Trump: Well, if that would happen because I am pro-life, and I will be appointing pro-life judges, I would think that that will go back to the individual states.

Clinton: I strongly support Roe v. Wade which guarantees a constitutional right to a woman to make the most intimate, most difficult in many cases, decisions about her health care that one can imagine. And in this case is not only about Roe v. Wade. It is about what's happening right now in America. So many states are putting very stringent regulations on women that block them from exercising that choice to the extent that they are defunding Planned Parenthood, which of course, provides all kinds of cancer screenings and other benefits for women in our country.

Wallace: All right let's move on to the subject of immigration and there is almost no issue that separates the two of you more than the issue of immigration. Actually ,there are a lot of issues separate the two of you. Mr. Trump you want to build a wall/ Secretary Clinton you have offered no specific plan or how you want to secure our southern border. Mr. Trump, you're calling for major deportations Secretary Clinton, you say that within your first one hundred days as president you want to offer a package that includes a pathway to citizenship. The question really is why are you right and your opponent wrong? Mr. Trump you go first in this segment you have two minutes.

Trump: Well first of all she wants to give amnesty, which is a disaster and very unfair to all the people that are waiting on line for many many years. We need strong borders. In the audience tonight we have four mothers of, I mean these are unbelievable people that I've gotten to know over a period of years whose children have been killed, brutally killed, by people that came into the country illegally. You have thousands of mothers and fathers and relatives all over the country. They are coming in illegally. Drugs are pouring in through the border. We have no country if we have no border. Hillary wants to give amnesty she wants to have open borders. The border secure as you know the border patrol agents sixteen thousand five hundred plus, ICE endorsed me. First time they've ever endorsed a candidate.

And it means their job is tougher. But they know what's going on they know it today than anybody. They want strong borders. They feel we have to have strong borders. I was up in New Hampshire the other day the biggest complaint they have with all of the problems going on in the world many of the problems caused by Hillary Clinton and by Barack Obama, all of the problems their single biggest problem, is heroine that pores across our southern borders just pouring and destroying their youth. It's poisoning the blood of their youth and plenty of other people.

We have to have strong borders. We have to keep the drugs out of our country. We are right now we're getting the drugs, they're getting the cash we need strong borders. We need absolute - we cannot give amnesty. Now I want to build a wall. We need the wall the border patrol, ICE, they all want the wall. We stopped the drugs we shore up the border. One of my first acts will be to get all of the drug lords, all of the bad ones, we have some bad bad people in this country that have to go out. Were going to get them out we're going to secure the border and once the border is secure at a later date we will make its determination as to the rest. But we have some bad hombres here that were going to get them out.

Clinton: As he was talking I was thinking about it young girl he met here in Las Vegas, Carla, who was very worried that her parents might he be deported because she was born in this country but they were not. They work hard, they do everything they can to get give her a good life. And you're right. I don't want to rip families apart. I don't want to be sending parents away from children. I don't want to see the deportation force that Donald has talked about in action in our country. We have eleven million undocumented people. They have four million American citizen children. Fifteen million people. He said as recently as a few weeks ago in Phoenix that every undocumented person will be subject to deportation. Now here's what that means -- it needs you would have to have a massive law enforcement presence where law enforcement officers would be going school to school, home to home, business to business, rounding up people who are undocumented and we would then have to put them on trains, on buses to get them out of our country. I think that is an idea that is not in keeping with who we are as a nation. I think it's an idea that would rip our country apart. I have been for border security for years. I voted for border security in the United States Senate and my comprehensive immigration reform plan of course include border security. But I want to put our resources where I think they're most needed. Getting rid of any violent person, anybody who should be deported, we should deport them. When it comes to the wall that Donald talks about building, he went to Mexico, he had a meeting with Mexican President - didn't even raise it, he choked, and then he got into a Twitter war because the Mexican president said we're not paying for that wall. So I think we are both a nation of immigrants and we are a nation of laws and that we can act accordingly and that's why I am introducing comprehensive immigration reform within the first hundred days with a path to citizenship.

Wallace: We are going to move on to the next topic, which is the economy. I hope we handle that as well as we did immigration, you also have very different ideas of how to get the economy growing faster. Secretary Clinton, in your plan government plays a big role, you see more government spending, more entitlements, more tax credits, more tax penalties. Mr. Trump, you want to get government out with lower taxes and less regulations. We're going to drill down into this a little bit more, but in this overview, please explain to me why you believe that your plan will create more jobs and growth for this country and your opponent's plan will not in this round. You go first, Secretary Clinton.

Clinton: I think when the middle class thrives, North America thrives and so my plan is based on growing the economy, giving middle-class families many more opportunities. I want us to have the biggest jobs program since World War II, jobs in infrastructure and advanced manufacturing. I think we can compete with high wage countries and I believe we should. New jobs and clean energy, not only to fight climate change, which is a serious problem, but to create new opportunities and new businesses. I want us to do more to help small business. That's where two thirds of the new jobs are going to come from.

I want us to raise the national minimum wage because people who live in poverty, who work full-time should not still be in poverty and I sure do want to make sure women get equal pay for the work we do.

I feel strongly that we have to have an education system that starts with preschool and goes through college. That's why I want more technical education in high schools and in community colleges, real apprenticeships to a prepare young people for the jobs of the future. I want to make college debt-free and for families making less than a hundred twenty five thousand dollars. You will not get a tuition bill from a public college or a university if the plan that I worked on with Bernie Sanders is enacted.

And we're going to work hard to make sure that it is, because we are going to go where the money is. Most of the gains in the last year since the great recession have gone to the very top. So we are going to have the wealthy pay their fair share. We are going to have corporations make a contribution greater than they are now to our country. That is a plan that has been analyzed by independent experts that said it could produce ten million new jobs. By contrast, Donald's plan has been analyzed to conclude it might lose three and half million jobs.

Why? Because his whole plan is to cut taxes to cut give the biggest tax breaks ever to the wealthy and the corporations. Adding twenty trillion dollars to our debt and causing the kind of dislocation that we have seen before, because it truly will be trickle-down economics on steroids. So the plan I have will actually produce greater opportunities; the plan he has will cost us jobs and possibly lead to another great recession.


Well first of all before I start on my plan, her plan is going to raise taxes and even double your taxes. Her tax plan is a disaster and she can say all she wants about college tuition and I'm a big proponent, we're going to do a lot of things for college tuition, but the rest of the public is going to be paying for it. We will have a massive, massive tax increase under Hillary Clinton's plan.

But I would like to start off where we left, because when I said Japan and Germany -- and I'm not just singling them out but South Korea -- these are very rich powerful countries. Saudi Arabia -- nothing but money, we protect Saudi Arabia. Why aren't they paying?

She immediately when she heard this I questioned it and I questioned NATO. Why aren't the NATO questions? Why aren't they paying? Since I did this, this was a year ago - the NATO question where they paying? Because they were paying. Since I did this this was a year ago all of a sudden they are paying. And I've been given a lot of credit for it and all the sudden they are starting to pay up. We are protecting people they have to pay up and I'm a big fan of NATO but they have to pay up she comes out and says we love our allies we think our allies are great. Well it's awfully hard to get them to pay up when you have someone saying we think how good they are.

We have to tell Japan and a very nice way we have to tell Germany all these countries we have a say you have to help us out. We have during his regime during President Obama's regime we have doubled our national debt. We are up to twenty trillion dollars. So my plan - we are going to renegotiate trade. We're going to have a lot of free trade more free trade than we have right now. But we have horrible deals. Our jobs are being taken out by the deal that her husband signed - NAFTA - one of the worst deals ever. Our jobs are being sucked out of our economy. You look at all of the places that I just left you go to Pennsylvania you to go to Ohio. You go to Florida you go to any of them you go upstate New York are jobs have fled to Mexico and other places. We are bringing our jobs back. I'm going to renegotiate NAFTA. And if I can't make a great deal then we're going to terminate NAFTA t we're going to create new deals are going to terminate it we're going to make a great trade deal And if we can't, do a duet with and going separate way it has been a disaster. And it cut taxes massively. We're going to cut business taxes massively. They're start hiring people. We're going to bring the two and a half trillion dollars that is offshore to the country. We are going to start the engine rolling again because right now our country is dying at one percent GDP.

Wallace: Mr. Trump, at the last debate, you said your talk about grabbing women was just that, talk, and that you'd never actually done it. And since then, as we all know, nine women have come forward and said that you either groped them or kissed them without their consent.

Trump: First of all, the stories have been largely debunked. Those people, I don't know those people. I have a feeling how they came I believe it was her campaign that did it. Just like if you look at what came out today on the clips where I was wondering what happened with my rally in Chicago And other rallies where we had such violence? She's the one in Obama that caused the violence. They hired people. They payed them fifteen hundred dollars and there on tape saying be violent cause fights do bad things.

I would say the only way - because those stories are all totally false I have to say that. And I didn't even apologize to my wife who is sitting right here because I didn't do anything. I didn't know any of these women, I didn't see these women. These women, the woman on the plane, the woman -- I think they want either fame or her campaign did it and I think it's her campaign. Because what I saw what they did, which is a criminal act by the way, where there telling people to go out and start fistfights and start violence and I'll tell you what. In particular in Chicago, people were hurt and people could have been killed in that riot. And that was now, all on tape, started by her. I believe Chris that she got these people to step forward. If it wasn't they get there ten minutes of fame. But they were all totally - it was all fiction. It was lies and it was fiction.


Well, at the last debate we heard Donald talking about what he did to women. And after that, a number of women have come forward saying that's exactly what he did to them. Now what was his response? Well, he held a number of big rallies where he said that he could not possibly have done those things to those women because they were not attractive enough for them to be assaulted.

He went on to say, "Look at her. I don't think so." About another woman, he said that wouldn't be my first choice. He attacked the woman reporter writing the story, called her disgusting as he has called a number of women during this campaign. Donald thinks belittling women makes him bigger. He goes after their dignity, their self-worth, and I don't think there is a woman anywhere doesn't know what that feels like. So we now know what Donald thinks and what he says and how he acts toward women. That's who Donald is. I think it's really up to all of us to demonstrate who we are and who our country is, and to stand up and be very clear about what we expect from our next president, how we want to bring our country together, where we don't want to have the kind of pitting of people one against the other where instead we celebrate our diversity, we lift people up, and we make our country even greater. America is great because America is good. And it really is up to all of us to make that true now and in the future and particularly for our children and our grandchildren.


And this bucket about fitness to be president there's been a lot of development over the last ten days since the last debate. I'd like to ask you about them these are questions that the American people have. Secretary Clinton, during your 2009 Senate confirmation hearing, you promised to avoid even the appearance of a conflict of interest with your dealing with the Clinton Foundation while we were Secretary of State. But emails show that donors got special access to you, those seeking grants for Haiti relief were considered separately from non-donors, and some of those donors got contracts - government contracts, taxpayer money. Can you really say that you kept your pledge to that Senate committee and why isn't what happened and what went on between you and the Clinton foundation, why isn't what Mr. Trump calls "pay to play"?


Well, everything I did as Secretary of State was in furtherance of our country's interests and our values. The State Department has said that, I think that it's been proven. But I am happy -- in fact, I'm thrilled to talk about the Clinton Foundation because it is a world renowned charity and I am so proud of the work that it does. You know, I could talk for the rest of the debate -- I know I don't have the time to do that, but just briefly: the Clinton Foundation made a possible for eleven million people around the world with HIV-AIDS to afford treatment, and that's about half of all the people the world who are getting treatment.


It's a criminal enterprise Saudi Arabia giving twenty five million dollars Qatar All these countries you talk about women and women's rights? So these are people that push gays off business, off buildings. These are people that kill women and treat women horribly and yet you take their money.

So I'd like to ask you right now why don't you give back the money that you've taken from certain countries that treat certain groups of people so horribly? Why don't you get back the money? I think would be a great gesture because she takes a tremendous amount of money and you take a look at the people of Haiti. I was at a Little Haiti the other day in Florida and I want to tell you they hate the Clintons. Because what happened in Haiti with the Clinton Foundation is a disgrace.

Clinton: Very quickly, we at the Clinton Foundation spend ninety percent -- ninety percent -- of all the money that is donated on behalf of programs of people around the world and in our own country. I'm very proud of that. We have the highest rating from the watchdogs that follow foundations and I'd be happy to compare what we do with the Trump Foundation, which took money from other people and bought a six foot portrait of Donald. I mean, who does that? It just was astonishing.

But when it comes to Haiti -- Haiti is the poorest country in our hemisphere, the earthquake and hurricane, it has devastated Haiti. Bill and I have been involved in trying to help Haiti for many years. The Clinton Foundation raised thirty million dollars to help Haiti after the catastrophic earthquake and all of the terrible problems the people there had. We've done things to help small businesses, agriculture and so much else. And we're going to keep working to help Haiti because it's an important part of the American experience.

Wallace: Mr. Trump, I want to ask about one must question in this topic. You have been warning at rallies recently that this election is rigged and that Hillary Clinton is in the process of trying to steal it from you. Your running mate Governor Pence pledged on Sunday that he and you, his words, will absolutely accept the result of this election. Today your daughter Ivanka said the same thing. I want to ask you here on the stage tonight, do you make the same commitment that you will absolutely, sir, that you will absolutely accept the result of the selection?

Trump: I will look at it at the time. I'm not looking anything now I will look at it at the time. What I've seen what I've seen it so bad. First of all the media is so dishonest and so corrupt and the pile on is so amazing that the New York Times actually wrote an article about it that they don't even care. It's so dishonest and they poison the minds of the voters but unfortunately for them I think the voters are seeing through it.

I think they're going to see right through it. We will find out on November eighth but I think they're going to see through it. Excuse me Chris if you look at your voter rolls you will see millions of people that are registered to vote, millions, this isn't coming for me this is coming from Pew report and other places millions of people that are registered to vote that shouldn't be registered to vote so let me just give you one other thing.

I talk about the corrupt media I talk about the millions of people I'll tell you on other thing. She shouldn't be allowed to run. Its -- she's guilty of a very very serious crime. She should not be allowed to run. And just in that respect I say it's rigged because she should never have been allowed to run for the presidency based on what she did with e-mails and so many other things.

Clinton: You know, every time Donald thinks things are not going in his direction, he claims whatever it is is rigged against him. The FBI conducted a year-long investigation into my e-mails. They concluded there was no case. He said that the FBI was rigged. He lost the Iowa caucus; he lost the Wisconsin primary. He said the Republican primary was rigged against him. Then Trump University gets sued for fraud and racketeering. He claims the court system and the federal judge is rigged against him. There was even a time when he didn't get an Emmy for his TV program three years in a row and he started tweeting that the Emmys were rigged.

This is a mindset; this is how Donald thinks. And it's funny but it's also really troubling. This is not the way our democracy works. We've been around for two hundred and forty years. We have had free and fair elections. We have accepted the outcomes when we may not have liked them. And that is what must be expected of anyone standing on the debate stage during a general election.

Wallace: let's move on the subject of foreign hotspots.

The Iraqi offensive to take back Mosul has begun. If they are successful in pushing ISIS out of that city and out of all of Iraq, the question then becomes what happens the day after and that is something that whichever of you, whoever of you ends up as president, is going to have to confront. Will you put U.S. troops into that vacuum to make sure that ISIS does not come back or is even replaced by something even worse?

Clinton: Well, I am encouraged that there is an effort led by the Iraqi army, supported by Kurdish forces and also given the help and advice from the number of special forces and other Americans on the ground, but I will not support putting American soldiers into Iraq as an occupying force. I don't think that is in our interests and I don't think that would be smart to do. In fact, Chris, I think that would be a big red flag waving for ISIS it to reconstitute itself. The goal here is to take back Mosul. It is going be a hard fight.I've got no illusions about that. And then continue to press into Syria to begin to take back and move on Rocca, which is the ISIS headquarters.

I am hopeful that the hard work that American military advisors have done will pay off and that we will see a really successful military operation. But we know we've got lots of work to do. Syria will remain a hotbed of terrorism as long as the civil war aided and abetted by the Iranians and Russians continue. So I have said, look, we need to keep our eye on ISIS. That is why I want to have an intelligence surge that protects us here at home. Why we have to go after them from the air, on the ground, online. We have to make sure here at home we don't let terrorists buy weapons -- if you are too dangerous to fly, you are too dangerous to buy a gun. And I am going to continue to push for a no-fly zone and safe havens within Syria.

Trump: Let me tell you. Mosul is so sad. We had Mosul but when she left, when she took everybody out we lost Mosul and now we are fighting again to get Mosul. The problem with Mosul and what they wanted to do is they wanted to get the leaders of ISIS who they felt were in Mosul. About three months ago I started reading that they want to get the leaders and they're going to attack Mosul. What ever happened to the element of surprise? We announce we're going after Mosul , I've been reading we've been going after Mosul, how long has it been Hillary, three months?

These people have all left they've all left. They've all left. The element of surprise Douglas MacArthur George Patton, spinning in their graves when they see the stupidity of our country.

So we're now fighting for Mosul which we had, all she had to do was stay there and now we're going in to get it, but you know the big winner and the only reason they got it is because she's running for the office of president.

And they want to look tough. They want to look good. He violated the red line in the sand. And he made so many mistakes. That is why we have the great migration. But she wanted to look good for the election. But who is going to get Mosul really? We will take eventually. If you look at what's happening much more tougher it's going to be more deaths than we thought. But the leaders I wanted to get are all wrong is because they're smart. What do we need this for? So Mosul is going to be a wonderful thing and Iran should write us a letter of thank you just like the other really stupid. The stupidest deal of all time. A deal that's going to give Iran absolutely nuclear weapons. Iran should write us yet another letter saying thank you very much because Iran as I said many years ago Iran is taking over Iraq. Something they wanted to do forever but we made it so easy for them. So we're now going to take Mosul and you knows who is going to be the beneficiary? Iran. Boy are they - they are outsmarting -- look you are not there you might be involved in that decision but you were there when you took everybody out of Mosul and out of Iraq. We shouldn't have been Iraq but you did vote for it. You shouldn't have been in Iraq but once you're in Iraq you should have never left the way -- the point is the big winner is going to be Iran.

Wallace: we need to move on to our final segment. And that is the national debt which has not been discussed until tonight. Our national debt, as a share of the economy, our GDP, is now seventy seven percent. That is the highest since just after World War II. But the Nonpartisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget says Secretary Clinton, under your plan debt would rise to eighty six percent of GDP over the next ten years. Mr. Trump, under your plan, they say it would rise to one hundred and five percent of GDP over the next ten years. Question is - why are both of you ignoring this problem? Mr. Trump, you go first.


Well, I say they're wrong because I'm going to create tremendous jobs. And were bringing GDP from really one percent, which is what it is now. If she got in, it'll be less than zero. But we're bringing it from one percent up to four percent. And I actually think we can go higher than 4 percent. I think you can go to 5 or 6 percent.

And if we do, you don't have to bother asking your question because we have a tremendous machine. We will have created a tremendous economic machine once again. To do that, we're taking back jobs. We're not going to let our companies be raided by other countries. Where we lose all our jobs, we don't make our product anymore. It's very sad. But I'm going to create a -- the kind of a country that we were from the standpoint of industry. We used to be there. To give it up. We become very, very sloppy. Bigger than countries. We've had people that are political hacks making the biggest deals in the world -- bigger than companies -- these trade deals are far bigger than these companies. And yet, we don't use our great leaders, many of whom back me and many of whom backed Hillary, I must say. But we don't use those people--those are the people these the greatest negotiators in the world. We have the greatest business people in the world. We have to use them to negotiate our trade deals. We use political hacks. We use people that get the position because they gave -- they made a campaign contribution. And they're dealing with China and people that are very much smarter than they are. So we have to use our great people. But with that being said, we will create an economic machine, the likes of which we haven't seen in many decades. And people, Chris, will again go back to work and they'll make lot of money and will have companies that will grow and expand and start from new.

Clinton: Well, first, when I hear Donald talk like that and know that his slogan is Make America Great Again, I wonder what what he thought when he thought America was great. You know, before he rushed in and says, for you about President Obama were there, I think it's important to recognize that he has been criticizing our government for decades. You know, back in 1987, he took out a one hundred thousand dollar ad in the New York Times during the time when President Reagan was president and basically said exactly what he just said now -- that we were the laughing stock of the world. He was criticizing President Reagan. This is the way Donald thinks about himself, puts himself into, you know, the middle and says, you know, I alone can fix it, as he said on the convention stage. But if you look at the debt, Chris, which is the issue you asked about, I pay for everything I'm proposing. I do not add a penny to the national debt.

I take that very seriously because I do think it's one of the issues we've got to come to grips with. So when I talk about how we're going to pay for education, how we're going to invest in infrastructure, how we're going to get the cost of prescription drugs down, a lot of the other issues that people talk to me about all the time, I've made it very clear. We are going where the money is. We are going to ask the wealthy and corporations to pay their fair share. And there is no evidence whatsoever that that will slow down or diminish our growth. In fact, I think just the opposite. Will have what economists call middle outgrowth. We've got to get back to rebuilding the middle class, the families of America. That's where growth will come from. That's why I want to invest in you. I want to invest in your family. And I think that's the smartest way to grow the economy, to make economy fairer. And we just have a big disagreement about this. It may be because of our experiences, You know, He's not obligate that is a millionaire.

First published: 20 October 2016, 7:22 IST