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Clinton Responds To Trump's Speech Leveling Charges Of Corruption


And to now talk about how Hillary Clinton and her supporters responded to Trump's speech, we are joined by NPR's Tamara Keith. She covers the Clinton campaign. Hi there, Tam.


MCEVERS: So what was Hillary Clinton's message today?

KEITH: Her speech was largely focused on her five-point plan for improving the economy and helping families get ahead. Her campaign wanted to use this speech to draw a contrast with Trump, show her walking out on a detailed policy speech and him attacking her.

But yesterday, Clinton was attacking Donald Trump. She went after him and his business practices, among other things. And then today, once she did turn to Trump in her speech, she speculated that maybe she got under his skin and that's why he delivered these attacks today. Of course he had planned this speech for a couple of weeks, so it's highly unlikely. This is maybe a correlation not causation situation.

MCEVERS: Right. I mean, did she spend any time specifically defending claims that he had made?

KEITH: A little bit, and mostly it was at the end of this speech. She called his charges outlandish lies and conspiracy theories. And she said that he was going after her personally because he lacks substance on policy. Her campaign sent a long stream of fact checks and statements responding to him, but Clinton herself didn't respond point by point. She did, however, defend the work of the Clinton Foundation. Here's that.


HILLARY CLINTON: The Clinton Foundation helps poor people around the world get access to lifesaving AIDS medicine.


CLINTON: Donald Trump uses poor people around the world to produce his line of suits and ties.

KEITH: And Trump's signature clothing lines are mostly made in China.

MCEVERS: A lot of Trump's attacks today seemed designed to reinforce this idea, these negative views about Clinton. What is her campaign doing to counteract that.

KEITH: So yesterday I was in Ohio talking to voters, and I heard them say some of the very same things that Donald Trump said today talking about Benghazi. I asked people to free associate. What comes to mind when you think of Hillary Clinton? And several people said liar, so the Clinton campaign has some work to do.

And what they are doing is running ads. They are spending millions of dollars on television ads in eight key battleground states. It's not clear whether that will counteract the high negatives, but what is clear is that they are unopposed on the air right now. Donald Trump is not spending any money on advertising right now, and the Clinton campaign and her allies are spending millions.

MCEVERS: That's NPR's Tamara Keith. Thanks a lot.

KEITH: You're welcome.

MCEVERS: And we should also say the NPR politics team was busy fact checking Trump's speech today. You can find an annotated version of that on our website, Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Tamara Keith has been a White House correspondent for NPR since 2014 and co-hosts the NPR Politics Podcast, the top political news podcast in America. Keith has chronicled the Trump administration from day one, putting this unorthodox presidency in context for NPR listeners, from early morning tweets to executive orders and investigations. She covered the final two years of the Obama presidency, and during the 2016 presidential campaign she was assigned to cover Hillary Clinton. In 2018, Keith was elected to serve on the board of the White House Correspondents' Association.