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Oct 26, 12:55 PM EDT

The Latest: Trump says he would stand by Israel

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Election News
Trump promotes his new luxury hotel _ along with campaign

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WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Latest on the U.S. presidential race (all times EDT):

12:50 p.m.

Donald Trump says he will stand "side by side" with Israel if he is elected president.

The Republican nominee made his comments came in a videotaped address to supporters in Israel. He said his administration would strengthen bridges between the two countries and "stand up" to enemies, including Iran, that he says are "bent on destroying Israel."

Trump's statement was shown to a gathering Wednesday in Jerusalem sponsored by Republicans Overseas Israel, That's a local organization that has encouraged American expatriates to cast absentee ballots for Trump.

It estimates that as many as 200,000 U.S. voters live in Israel - a number it believes could potentially influence the outcomes in key battleground states.


12:40 p.m.

The latest hacked emails from Hillary Clinton's campaign give fresh evidence that her supporters were worried about primary rival Bernie Sanders.

A liberal operative asked campaign chairman John Podesta if President Barack Obama could "even hint" that he was supporting Clinton before the Illinois primary in March. Podesta had previously been Obama's chief of staff. It's his stolen emails that are being released by Wikileaks.

The operative, Neera Tanden, wrote: "Maybe they don't want to do this, but the stakes are pretty damn high in this election for him."

Podesta responded with a reference to Obama friend and adviser Valerie Jarrett. He said: "Why don't you push Valerie a little bit."

Obama stayed officially neutral in the primary until Clinton clinched the nomination in June.


12:30 p.m.

Hillary Clinton is making a pitch to independents and Republicans as she campaigns in Florida. She's pointing to a common vision shared by all Americans.

The Democratic presidential nominee said Wednesday in Lake Worth, Florida, that she believes that Americans are "coming together at the end of this election." She said that includes not just Democrats, but Republicans and independents who are backing her White House campaign against Republican Donald Trump.

Clinton said more than 10 million people have already voted in the election and about 2 million of those early votes have been cast in Florida.

Clinton said her supporters they can't take their "foot off the gas." She said every vote counts, a lesson learned from the 2000 Florida recount, when George W. Bush defeated Al Gore.


12:25 p.m.

Donald Trump is suggesting that the successful construction of his new Washington hotel shows the kind of work he could do as president.

Trump said at the hotel's grand opening Wednesday that "today is a metaphor for what we can accomplish for this country."

He said he has "lived a great life and now I want to give back to the country that has given me so much."

Trump struck an unusually optimistic note, saying there is "nothing we cannot accomplish" and that the "United States is great." That's a change from his regular claim that he needs to "Make America Great Again."

He said "he was tired of the excuses" from career politicians, including opponent Hillary Clinton.


12:05 p.m.

Donald Trump is congratulating Newt Gingrich for his on-air spat with Fox News personality Megyn Kelly.

Gingrich told Kelly in a heated exchange that she is "fascinated with sex" and challenged her to call Bill Clinton a sexual predator.

Kelly declined, and ended their interview on her show Tuesday night by suggesting the former House speaker take some time for anger management.

Trump said Wednesday during the opening ceremony for his new hotel in Washington: "Congratulations, Newt, on last night."

He added that Gingrich doesn't "play games."

Gingrich defended the sparring as he arrived at the event. He said, "That's just the business."


11:55 a.m.

Donald Trump is saying he appeared at the grand opening ceremony of his new Washington hotel "to be there" for his family - and will resume campaigning right afterward.

The Republican presidential nominee has received criticism for taking hours out of his campaign schedule Wednesday to attend the opening. Less than two weeks remain before Election Day.

He said that "with the notable exception of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, this is the most coveted piece of real estate in Washington, DC."

He claimed that his ability to deliver the hotel to under budget and ahead of schedule captures his pitch to the country and makes him the choice to revive the "broken" federal government.

Trump said he would return to the campaign trail after the ceremony.


11:45 a.m.

Donald Trump is taking a break from the campaign trail to attend the grand opening of his company's new Washington hotel.

He has summoned the press and invited guests to the Trump International Hotel Washington, D.C. at the Old Post Office building. It's just blocks from the White House.

Trump has developed an unusual pattern of using his presidential campaign to promote his business ventures.

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, a Trump adviser, is dismissing the idea that the stop is a distraction from the campaign.

He said that Trump has "got to make the case that he brings in things under budget and ahead of schedule. And a Trump government will be under budget and ahead of schedule."


10:15 a.m.

Hillary Clinton says she would be "incredibly humbled and honored" to be the America's first female president. But she says people are still trying to figure out what that would mean for the country.

The Democratic presidential nominee says that "most people are OK with" having a woman in the White House but "some people are still having questions about it." She was interviewed on The Breakfast Club, a syndicated radio show based in New York. The interview was aired Wednesday.

Clinton said that while President Barack Obama was the first black president, he "owned his excellence."

She said she hopes if she gets elected, people will say, "Hey, she's getting it done."

Clinton was campaigning in Florida on Wednesday with less than two weeks to go before Election Day.


10 a.m.

Hillary Clinton's is limiting how lobbyists may participate in her White House transition effort.

The Democratic presidential candidate is banning lobbyists from contributing financially to the transition, prohibiting them from lobbying while working on her team and barring them from helping with any policy area that they've lobbied on in the last year.

Those are the same restrictions that President Barack Obama adopted in 2008. They do not apply to her administration - only the transition team.

Both presidential candidates are deep in planning for the transition from their campaigns to the White House. They are creating lists of potential administration appointees and developing a roadmap for their policy agendas.

Legislation signed in 2010 requires the government to provide office space, computers and technological support for both candidates.


7:40 a.m.

Donald Trump's campaign manager is defending his "pit stop" in Washington to preside at the formal opening of his new luxury hotel blocks from the White House.

Kellyanne Conway told NBC's "Today" show that the Republican presidential nominee is justified in showing off his "under-budget, ahead-of-schedule" Trump International Hotel on Wednesday.

She called it a demonstration of Trump's can-do spirit, calling it a "stunning piece of architecture." She noted that Trump had made a dozen campaign stops in Florida this week and says he shouldn't be criticized for attending the hotel opening. Polls show Trump trailing Democratic rival Hillary Clinton in key battleground states.

Conway said that Trump has "the most active campaign schedule of the two candidates by far."


3:50 a.m.

Donald Trump is taking a break from campaigning Wednesday to formally open his new hotel in Washington, while dispatching his running mate to play political defense in Utah - which hasn't backed a Democrat for president in 52 years.

The choice of travel destinations shows the Republican presidential ticket being pulled in two directions while Democrat Hillary Clinton surges.

Pence also is stopping in swing states of Nevada and Colorado before he heads on Thursday to solidly Republican Nebraska, a state that awards some of its five electoral votes by congressional district. His rally in Omaha may be aimed at shoring up support in the one that Clinton could potentially win.

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