How Donald Trump is Undermining Faith in the Election

Morning Must Reads: October 17

If you only read one thing: Donald Trump is going further than ever before in trying to undermine voters’ faith in the American political system, tweeting Sunday that the election is being stolen from him at the ballot box. It’s the latest component of the Trump conspiracy in which he claims the media, Republicans, global elites, and the federal government are working to stop him. The reality is it’s just Trump’s way to find a way to make a now-likely loss on Nov. 8 less damaging to his “winning” brand. But the cost may be exorbitant, breaking with generations of candidates going out of their way to respect the outcome at the ballot box even if they don’t agree with it. His comments are the latest to draw a wedge between himself and GOP leadership (and even his own running mate).

Hillary Clinton’s campaign is getting ready to expand the map with a final push to Election Day, shifting resources and focus to long-shot states like Arizona, where she is hoping to capitalize on Trump’s weakness. The effort is less about trying to win those states outright—though she’d like that—than it is about forcing Trump to play defense in deep-red states and giving down-ballot Democrats a boost.

A North Carolina GOP headquarters is firebombed. Trump makes a TV push. And little dirt in Clinton’s Goldman speeches.

Here are your must reads:

Must Reads

Paul Ryan Rejects Donald Trump’s Claims of ‘Rigged’ Election System
Latest break with party’s nominee [TIME]

Donald Trump Personally Attacked the Women Accusing Him of Sexual Assault
Questioning their looks rather than offering facts [TIME]

North Carolina Republican Headquarters Firebombed
Election takes violent turn as both [Charlotte Observer]

22 Toxic Days for Hillary Clinton
The polls point to the promised land. But she’ll have to get past Trump and WikiLeaks first [Politico]

As Trump Stumbles, Clinton Weighs a Striking Choice
Expand the map or stick to the plan [Washington Post]

Trump Son-in-Law Makes Approach on Post-Election TV Start-Up
Jared Kushner has contacted Aryeh Bourkoff, head of boutique firm known for media deals [Financial Times]

Sound Off

“We will absolutely accept the results of the election.” — Indiana Gov. Mike Pence on NBC Sunday morning

“The election is absolutely being rigged by the dishonest and distorted media pushing Crooked Hillary – but also at many polling places – SAD.” — Donald Trump in a Sunday afternoon tweet

Bits and Bites

Donald Trump Claims Election Will Be Rigged at Polling Sites [TIME]

Saturday Night Live’s Melania Trump Channels Beyoncé in Lemonade Parody [TIME]

Donald Trump Suggests Hillary Clinton Used Drugs in Last Debate [TIME]

Former Apprentice Contestant Says Donald Trump Sexually Harassed Her, Kissed Her on the Mouth [TIME]

Clinton Goldman Speech Transcripts Show Little to Match Fuss [Bloomberg]

Emails show Clinton’s response to LGBT backlash [Associated Press]


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