Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump faced off in their final presidential debate Wednesday night, locking horns on a series of hot-button issues — abortion, the 2nd Amendment, immigration and Russia.
And once again, Chicago surfaced as a campaign topic.
Trump accused Clinton and President Barack Obama of paying people to incite violence ahead of his planned rally in Chicago earlier this year.
“She caused the violence,” Trump said of his Democratic rival.
The Republican candidate also put Chicago’s crime problem in the spotlight in a gun control discussion.
And in one of the debate’s more dramatic moments, Trump refused to say whether he would accept results of the presidential election — no matter who wins. He has for days said the election has been rigged against him, while also bashing the media.
“I will look at it at the time,” Trump said when moderator Chris Wallace asked him about accepting the results. “I’ll tell you in time. I’ll keep you in suspense.”
While there were plenty of jabs thrown between the two, the third presidential debate, held at the University of Nevada-Las Vegas, also covered more ground than the previous two, with just 19 days before Election Day.
At first, Wallace focused the discussion on fundamental issues affecting Americans, including immigration, abortion and national security.
But just as a leaked tape of lewd audio took up some of the second debate, Trump on Wednesday was asked about several allegations women have made against him since then.
“Those stories have been largely debunked,” Trump said, arguing he didn’t know any of the women accusing him of sexual misconduct.
Clinton used the question to talk about Trump and his view of women, saying he “thinks belittling women makes him bigger.”
Trump once again brought up Chicago, saying the city “has the toughest gun laws in the United States” but also “more gun violence than any other city.”
That came in response to Trump being asked about opposing any limits on assault weapons or limits on high-capacity magazines, as well as his support for a national right to carry law.
Trump also pointed the finger at Clinton for violence that occurred at his canceled Chicago rally.
“She is the one — and Obama — that caused the violence. They hired people. They paid them $1,500 and they’re on tape saying be violent, cause fights, do bad things.”
Trump said people at the rally “were hurt” and “people could have been killed in that riot.”
Those comments were made in response to a video that showed an undercover operative posing as a Democratic activist claiming to have arranged for mentally ill, homeless and other people to spark violence at Trump rallies. The video was posted by a conservative investigative non-profit group. Chicago area consultant Robert Creamer, who was seen in the video, has called the claim untrue, but stepped aside from his campaign duties.
Trump canceled the rally when fights broke out between his supporters and protesters.
Clinton sought to put Trump in a corner to condemn Vladimir Putin and Russia for their work in the WikiLeaks emails — arguing they were released to influence the election in Trump’s favor. The two fought over the email release — Clinton pointing the finger at Russia and Trump urging there’s not enough proof.
“You encouraged espionage against our people … you are willing to spout the Putin line,” Clinton said.
“She has no idea whether it’s Russia or China, or whoever,” Trump said. “You have no idea.”
Trump used Putin to rile Clinton and her work in foreign policy, saying she doesn’t like the Russian leader “because he’s outsmarted her every step out of the way.”
Trump later urged that Putin is not his “best friend.”
“If Russia and the United States got along well and went after ISIS, that would be good. He [Putin] has no respect for her. He has no respect for our president,” Trump said.
That began a back and forth between the two: “Well, that’s because he’d rather have a puppet as president,” Clinton responded.
“You’re the puppet,” Trump said.
When pressed by Wallace whether he condemns Russia or anyone else involved with espionage of Americans, Trump said “of course.”
“Of course I condemn. Of course. I don’t know Putin. I have no idea,” Trump said.
Putin and Wikileaks came to light after Clinton was asked to defend a paid speech in which she said her dream was an “open border.” Clinton defended her speech, saying the comment was made about having open borders in terms of an “electric system that crosses borders.”
But she used the response to push Trump to denounce Putin.
“That was a great pivot off the fact that she wants open borders,” Trump said in his response.
There were also fundamental differences highlighted during the televised debate during a discussion about the U.S. Supreme Court and its nominees. Trump said he’d protect the Second Amendment, which he said “is under absolute siege.”
“The justices that I’m going to appoint will be pro-life, they will have a conservative bent, they will be protecting the Second Amendment,” Trump said.
Asked whether he would work to overturn Roe. v. Wade, Trump said: “That will happen. And that will happen automatically in my opinion because I’m putting pro-life justices on the court.”
The two also tangled over immigration, with Clinton taking a dig at Trump for his trademark campaign pledge to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexican border. Clinton said Trump went to Mexico and didn’t broach the subject with the Mexican president: “He didn’t even raise it. He choked.”
Trump said Clinton wanted to build the wall, too, but she couldn’t get it done. He said the key to the issue was stopping the flood of illegal drugs from Mexico.
“We have some bad hombres here, and we’re going to get them out,” Trump said.