WASHINGTON: Targeting Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump over rejigging of his campaign for the second time in two months, his Democratic rival Hillary Clinton has said the move will not change his personality.
"I think it's fair to say that Donald Trump has shown us who he is, he can hire and fire anybody he wants from his campaign. They can make him read new words from a teleprompter," Clinton said at an election rally in Cleveland yesterday.
"But he is still the same man who insults Gold Star families, demeans women, mocks people with disabilities, and thinks he knows more about ISIS than our generals," she said amidst laughter from the audience.
"There is no new Donald Trump. This is it. And you know, I hope you will talk to any of your friends who are flirting with the idea of voting for Donald Trump. Friends don't let friends vote for Trump," Clinton said hours after the real estate tycoon from New York made a major shake up in his campaign, which political analysts said is aimed to boost his electioneering.
After the two back-to-back conventions last month, Clinton has maintained a sustained lead in all the major national polls. As per RealClearPolitics, which keeps track of all major national polls, Clinton is leading Trump by more than six percentage points.
Addressing a major election rally in this key swing State of Ohio, Clinton said under his economic proposals unveiled last week, Trump wants to give tax cuts to big corporations, millionaires, Wall Street money managers.
"He's even created a new tax loophole that we call the Trump Loophole, because it's really good for Trump. It would let millionaires and billionaires cut their tax rate in half on a lot of their income. Under his plans, Donald Trump would pay a lower tax rate than middle-class families," she said.
"Of course, we have no idea what tax rate he pays, because, unlike everybody else who's run for president in the last four or five decades, he refuses to release his tax returns, so the American people can't really judge," she said.
Taking a dig at Trump, Clinton said she is proud that she has run a campaign of issues, not insults.
"That's what I'm going to continue to do for the next 83 days. Because I think the details actually matter. That's why I sweat the details," she said.
"I really care a lot about what happens to the young people and the families and our seniors. That's why I'm going to do everything I can to raise the national minimum wage so that it is a living wage," Clinton said.
Meanwhile, a confident Clinton Campaign has said the latest restructuring of his team only shows that Trump Campaign has doubled down on small, nasty and divisive instincts.
"After several failed attempts to pivot into a more serious campaign, Donald Trump has decided to double down on his most small, nasty and divisive instincts," Robby Mook, the Clinton Campaign manager, said.
In a major shake up, Trump appointed Breitbart News executive chairman Stephen Bannon as his campaign's CEO and GOP campaign strategist Kellyanne Conway his campaign manager.
"This latest shake-up turns the? ?campaign over to someone best known for running a so-called news site that peddles divisive, at times racist, anti-Muslim, and anti-semitic conspiracy theories," Mook said.
"What's become clear from this is that no matter how much the Republican party wants to clean Donald Trump up, get him on a teleprompter and get him on message, he has officially won the fight to let Trump be Trump. He keeps telling us who he is, it's time that we believe him," he said.
Mook alleged that the Southern Poverty Law Center noted that Breitbart News under Bannon's leadership had, "Undergone a noticeable shift towards embracing ideas on the extremist fringe of the conservative right, racist ideas, race-baiting ideas, anti-Muslim, and anti-immigrant ideas, all key tenants making up an emerging racist ideology known as the "alt-right".
The Breitbart organization has been known to defend white supremacists, he alleged.
"Like Trump who has refused to apologize to Gold Star father Khizr Khan, Bennan himself has said, relentlessly going after Khan. Breitbart has compared the work of Planned Parenthood to the Holocaust," Mook said.
"They've also repeatedly used anti-LGBT slurs in their coverage. And finally, like Trump himself, Breitbart and Bannon have frequently trafficked in all sorts of deranged conspiracy theories from touting that President Obama was not born in America to claiming that the Obama Administration was importing more hating Muslims," he said.
"So, it's unfortunately not surprising to see this happen, coming from Trump after weeks of stories about his need to pivot to a more serious campaign. It's clear that his divisive, erratic, and dangerous rhetoric simply represents who he really is," Mook said.
However, the Republican leadership and several of Trump aid rallied behind the party's presidential nominee on his campaign restructuring.
"Steve (Bennan) fully understands the pulse of the grassroots. That's what is largely driving this Trump campaign and that's what's at the frustration that is going through this country right now," Republican National Committee chief strategist Sean Spicer told CNN in an interview.
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich said "the shake-up has strengthened the Trump campaign. Well, I think they're very good for Trump because it strengthens it," Gingrich told the Fox News Radio.