Donald Trump cast the US presidential race in stark personal terms Wednesday, telling voters that if he loses against Hillary Clinton it will be the “single greatest waste” of his time and money.
The provocative billionaire, in a disjointed speech in Ocala, Florida with just 27 days before the election, reminded supporters that he will have spent some $100 million of his own fortune on his campaign.
“If I don’t win on November 8th, I will consider this the single greatest waste of time, of energy and money,” the Republican nominee told the crowd.
“We’ll not be able to reduce your taxes, or save your Second Amendment and appoint Supreme Court justices, and take care of your vets and fix up your very depleted” military, he said.
Trump trails his Democratic opponent Clinton in national polls, and his campaign is limping after last week’s release of a 2005 tape in which he is caught bragging about groping women.
He has since apologized for the comments, saying they were just “locker-room” banter.
Several fellow Republicans have abandoned him, and the nation’s top elected Republican is refusing to defend or campaign with Trump.
In Florida, Trump bashed Clinton as a criminal who has skirted punishment for her use of private email while secretary of state, which he said put America’s national security at risk.
“Other people’s lives have been ruined, destroyed for doing a tiny fraction” of what Clinton has done.
“I am ashamed of what has happened to our country and so are you,” he said.
With the race boiling down to three final weeks and Clinton in the driver’s seat, Trump appeared to be savaging his rival to keep her supporters or undecided voters away from the polls on Election Day.
“She pledged to dissolve the borders of the United States of America,” Trump fumed, referring to a hacked email, allegedly to a Clinton aide, that included quotes from her closed-door speeches to Wall Street banks and other corporations.
Clinton apparently told a Brazilian bank in 2013: “My dream is a hemispheric common market, with open trade and open borders, sometime in the future with energy that’s as green and sustainable as we can get it.”
The Democratic nominee was in Colorado on Wednesday, where her communications director criticized Trump’s “scorched-earth policy” aimed at driving down Democratic turnout.
“Obviously Hillary Clinton is very concerned about how divisive this race has been, and all that Donald Trump has done to try to divide Americans,” Jennifer Palmieri told reporters.
“We feel energy is growing on the Democratic side,” she said, citing growing Democratic voter registration in some key swing states.