The Latest: Sanders notes he has always faced long odds

AP News
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Posted: Apr 25, 2016 9:23 PM
The Latest: Sanders notes he has always faced long odds

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on the presidential nomination race on the eve of primaries in Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Delaware and Maryland (all times local):

9:15 p.m.

Bernie Sanders is facing long odds heading into Tuesday's primaries, but he's reminding voters that he began his campaign nearly a year ago with little support for or belief in his candidacy.

The Vermont senator says that while "no one dreamed we could go anywhere," he has won 16 states by "telling the truth."

Actors Susan Sarandon and Kendrick Sampson also spoke at the rally at Drexel University in Philadelphia, attended by hundreds inside the college's athletic center and thousands more outside the building.

Sanders reiterated what he sees as his major differences with Clinton, including campaign finance, trade and support for a carbon tax. He told the audience that his candidacy is asking people to "think outside of the status quo."

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9:05 p.m.

Hillary Clinton says she will aim to have a Cabinet that is half women if she is elected president.

During an MSNBC town hall Monday evening, host Rachel Maddow asked Clinton if she would match a pledge that Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau made — and kept — to appoint women to half of his Cabinet positions.

Clinton says, "I am going to have a Cabinet that looks like America, and 50 percent of America is women."

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9 p.m.

Hillary Clinton says she didn't set any conditions for supporting Barack Obama when she exited the primary race in 2008 and says she hopes "we will see the same this year."

During a MSNBC town hall Monday night, host Rachel Maddow asked the Democratic presidential candidate if she would consider adopting any of Bernie Sanders' platform to win over his supporters should she become the nominee.

Clinton says she is "winning because of what I stand for and what I've done and what our ideas are."

Clinton says that when she lost the nomination to Obama in 2008, "I didn't say, you know what, if Senator Obama does X, Y and Z, maybe I will support him."

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5:33 p.m.

Hillary Clinton recalled learning to shoot a gun on Monday, as she stressed her support for stronger firearms laws in western Pennsylvania.

Before about 800 people a community college in Youngwood, Clinton said she learned how to shoot at her grandfather's lake cottage near Scranton.

"I've gone hunting, I've gone skeet shooting, I understand the important role that guns play in so many people's lives," said Clinton. She also has been adamant about finding ways to cut down on gun violence.

On the eve of five more presidential primaries, Clinton continued her attacks on Republicans Donald Trump and Ted Cruz. She made just one reference to primary opponent Bernie Sanders, questioning his plan to provide free tuition at public universities.

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5:23 p.m.

John Kasich heads to Oregon newly free of competition from Ted Cruz, thanks to the deal they worked out to stop Donald Trump.

But many of Oregon's voters already know more about Cruz than they do Kasich, thanks to an oversight from Kasich's campaign. Kasich's team never submitted his biography to the secretary of state's office, which prints out a voter pamphlet each year bearing information on each candidate.

This year, the pamphlet includes Kasich's name followed by an asterisk indicating that he didn't submit any information. Cruz and Donald Trump, meanwhile, each get a full column explaining their positions and personal histories.

Kasich's campaign late Monday sent out a statement saying the Ohio governor is on the ballot in Oregon "and the campaign will do its part to educate voters about why they should vote for him the primary."

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4:04 p.m.

A top Ted Cruz aide says the campaign has identified a "short list" of possible vice presidential candidates. A spokeswoman for Carly Fiorina swiftly confirmed that the former business executive is among those being considered for the running mate slot.

Campaign manager Jeff Roe says on Twitter that Cruz's team is going through the "normal processes" for picking a running mate. He did not identify others on the short list.

Fiorina dropped out of the Republican primary earlier this year and endorsed Cruz. The Weekly Standard first reported that she was being vetted as a possible vice president.

Cruz mathematically has no chance of getting the 1,237 delegates needed to clinch the GOP nomination. Instead, he's trying to block front-runner Donald Trump from crossing the delegate threshold and push the Republican race to a contested convention.

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3:12 p.m.

Donald Trump mercilessly mocked rival John Kasich in Rhode Island Monday, labeling his eating "disgusting" and calling him "stubborn" for remaining in the race.

Speaking in front of a rally crowd in Warwick, Trump says of Kasich that "I have never seen a human being eat in such a disgusting fashion."

He continued: "This guy takes a pancake and he's shoving in his mouth." That's not presidential, Trump added.

The billionaire developer was referring to Kasich's morning conversation with reporters while eating. Trump said he'd been watching television with his youngest son Barron when Barron told his father, "'Daddy look.' I said, 'Don't watch! Little bites, little bites.'"

Trump also called Kasich stubborn and compared him to a child for refusing to exit the race when he has no chance of winning without a contested convention. He also took aim at Ted Cruz, saying: "when he's under pressure he's like a basket case."

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1:38 p.m.

Donald Trump is railing against a deal reached by rivals Ted Cruz and John Kasich to divvy up a series of upcoming contests to maximize their chances of halting Trump's march to the GOP nomination.

"It's collusion," Trump says of the deal, speaking at a rally in Rhode Island. Trump says that, "if you collude in business or if you collude in the stock market, they put you in jail. But in politics, because it's a rigged system, because it's a corrupt enterprise, in politics you're allowed to collude." But Trump says he's actually OK with the decision because it demonstrates his rivals' weakness.

"It shows how weak they are. It shows how pathetic they are," he says.

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1:08 p.m.

Hillary Clinton took aim at Donald Trump in Delaware Monday, saying the Republican front-runner should come out of his towers and "actually talk and listen to people."

Before more than 800 people at a Wilmington theater, Clinton did not mention her Democratic rival — Bernie Sanders — and focused instead on Trump and the Republicans. She noted contrasts on climate change, minimum wage and abortion rights. In some of her toughest comments, she suggested Trump was out of touch with average Americans.

"If you want to be president with the United States, you've got to get familiar with the United States," Clinton said. "Don't just fly that big jet in and land it and go make a big speech and insult everybody you can think of."

Clinton did not mention Sanders, even when she spoke about gun laws, an area where she frequently attacks his record.

Clinton is campaigning on the East Coast in advance of primary elections Tuesday in Rhode Island, Connecticut, Maryland, Delaware and Pennsylvania.

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12:18 p.m.

Republican presidential candidate John Kasich is calling off two planned public events in Indiana after his agreement to stand aside for Ted Cruz in the state.

Kasich had planned Tuesday events in Indianapolis and Noblesville for Tuesday, but he announced a deal Sunday to give Cruz "a clear path" for Indiana's May 3 primary.

Kasich Indiana campaign spokesman Pete Seat says the Ohio governor will still travel to Indianapolis on Tuesday for a private fundraising event.

Kasich said Monday in Philadelphia that he isn't telling Indiana Republicans to not vote for him. He says he simply agreed not to spend "resources" in Indiana.

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12:11 p.m.

Donald Trump is adding Chris Christie's former campaign manager to his expanding team.

The GOP front-runner's campaign announced Monday that it has hired Ken McKay to serve as a senior adviser to its delegate operations team.

McKay previously managed the New Jersey governor's presidential campaign. Christie has since become one of Trump's most prominent endorsers.

The hire comes as part of Trump's major campaign staff overhaul over the last few weeks. Trump is trying to stave off an effort by his rivals to prevent him from amassing the delegates needed to win the nomination on the first ballot at the national convention. He's also brought on Rick Wiley, who managed former rival Scott Walker's campaign, and several former aides to Ben Carson. McKay has also held roles with the Republican National Committee and Republican Governors Association.

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12:02 p.m.

Hillary Clinton got a pop-themed introduction Monday in Delaware by Sen. Tom Carper, who invoked the Donna Summer song "She Works Hard for the Money."

Carper sought to get a crowd of over 800 gathered in Wilmington to recite a version of the lyrics to the 1983 hit with him. "She works hard for the money," he said. "So hard for the money. She works hard for the money. So we better treat her right."

"Tomorrow we're going to treat her right tomorrow?" Carper asked the crowd. "She will treat this country right."

Clinton's income has been a subject of campaign discussion because rival Bernie Sanders has made an issue of the hundreds of thousands of dollars Clinton has been paid for speeches to Goldman Sachs and other big firms. Clinton has staunchly denied the implicit charge that that the money has influences her public policy-making decisions.

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12:01 p.m.

No matter what happens in Tuesday's primaries, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders is "going all the way to the convention," says his campaign manager.

Jeff Weaver told reporters in Connecticut Monday there's no benchmark the presidential campaign must hit in Tuesday's five-state primaries in order to remain in the race, saying their "supporters will stand with us all the way to the end." Asked whether he expects a contested national Democratic convention, Weaver said, "Absolutely, 100 percent." He added that Sanders intends to lead his campaign "all the way to the end."

Nearly 2,000 supporters turned out for a morning rally at a downtown Hartford riverfront park where Sanders did not hold back from criticizing party front-runner Hillary Clinton. Sanders took issue with Clinton's paid speeches on Wall Street and for not supporting a 15-an-hour minimum wage.

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11:45 a.m.

Ted Cruz is shrugging off suggestions that his non-compete arrangement with John Kasich in Indiana and other states is a political Hail Mary.

The Texas senator told reporters Monday in Borden, Indiana, that instead "there is desperation on the Trump side."

He argued that Republican front-runner Donald Trump knows he won't be able to get enough delegates to the Republican National Convention to win the party's nomination and "is in real trouble."

Cruz and Kasich are focusing on states where they can be successful, thus preventing Trump from clinching the nomination. Kasich is clearing a path for Cruz in Indiana and Cruz is doing the same for the Ohio governor in Oregon and New Mexico.

Cruz is focusing on Indiana's May 3 primary, saying Trump's campaign is "scared of Indiana."

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11 a.m.

Ohio Gov. John Kasich is urging people in Indiana to vote for him, despite his agreement to stand aside in that state.

That's the Republican presidential candidate's message about 13 hours after he announced an arrangement to give rival Ted Cruz "a clear path" in Indiana, which holds a primary election next week. In exchange, Cruz is to give Kasich a clear path in Oregon and New Mexico.

The arrangement is designed to prevent front-runner Donald Trump from clinching the nomination. Kasich addressed the matter publicly for the first time as he campaigned in Philadelphia on Monday.

Kasich says of Indiana voters, "I've never told them not to vote for me. They ought to vote for me." He says he simply agreed not to spend "resources" in Indiana.

He's also playing down the significance of the extraordinary arrangement.

He says, "It's not a big deal."