Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton met in Las Vegas at 5 am UAE time for the third and final US presidential debate. Read what happened as gulfnews.com covered the debate live:
'Beyond the pale'
Some Republican lawmakers were outraged by Trump refusing to say he'll accept the election results. Senator Jeff Flake said Trump was "beyond the pale", and onetime presidential candidate Senator Lindsey Graham said if Trump loses, it will be "because he failed as a candidate".
Trump did not appear to do enough to connect with women, college-educated and suburban voters who have gravitated to Clinton during the fall and helped her build a solid lead in preference polls.
His unwillingness to say he'll accept the results of the election should he lose will give Clinton another way to argue that he doesn't have the temperament to be president.
And now Trump has little time to make up ground. When the debate got underway, about 2.2 million Americans had already voted and many more will take part in in-person early voting next week. Clinton's campaign expects more than half the electorate in the battleground states of Florida, North Carolina and Nevada will vote before Election Day.
For many voters, the debate may have been the final chance for Clinton and Trump to make their case.
Pence: Trump will accept result
Trump running mate Mike Pence now says Trump will in fact accept the outcome of the election.
PENCE just now to @MajorCBS: "I think there's no question that Donald Trump will accept the outcome of this election"— Alex Romano (@alexromano) October 20, 2016
Trump refuses to say he will accept election result
Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump doubled down on controversial claims that the US election is rigged during a presidential debate Wednesday, refusing to say he will respect the result.
"I'll look at it at the time," Trump said. "What I've seen is so bad."
An angry Clinton responded with incredulity to the highly controversial charge that questions the very health of US democracy.
"Let's be clear about what he's saying and what that means. He's denigrating and talking down our democracy," she said.
"I, for one, am appalled that somebody who is the nominee of one of our two major parties would take that kind of position."
Asked by the debate moderator whether he would concede if the results showed he lost to Clinton, Trump again demurred. "I'll keep you in suspense, okay?"
"This is horrifying," Clinton said.
Clinton 'such a nasty woman'
Donald Trump says Hillary Clinton is "such a nasty woman."
Trump made the remark while Clinton was talking in the last presidential debate Wednesday about preserving Social Security and Medicare. She says her plan to save both programs would raise Social Security taxes on the wealthy, including her and Trump, "assuming he can't figure out how to get out of it."
As she continued talking Trump interjected, "Such a nasty woman."
Clinton did not react to the comment and instead completed her statement on her plans for Social Security and Medicare.
Clinton gives polished performance
As the final debate comes to a conclusion, it was Hillary Clinton who again came out on top of Donald Trump.
She had clearly done her homework on how to respond to Trump when it came to his record on women and his record of calling the election rigged. Clinton's sections on establishing Trump's patterns of behaviour were some of her best out of all three debates.
Then there was her answer on experience, as she talked through her career as a politician, dropping in exactly what Trump was doing at each point. If there is any normality left in this campaign for the presidency, Clinton is streets ahead after her answers tonight.
Clinton takes down Trump
'He is denigrating our democracy and I am appalled'
Strong from Clintonhttps://t.co/xuRNHAU2eW#USPresidentialDebate pic.twitter.com/Zv82poMEHj— Gulf News (@gulf_news) October 20, 2016
Trump on allegations of abuse against him
"I don’t know these women. I didn’t do anything. It was all fiction. It was lies."https://t.co/xuRNHAU2eW#USPresidentialDebate pic.twitter.com/gQYxSkAGmY— Gulf News (@gulf_news) October 20, 2016
Trump on Putin
'I don't know Putin' I never met Putin' 'This is not my friend'https://t.co/xuRNHAU2eW#USPresidentialDebate pic.twitter.com/K1PVWuTY0Z— Gulf News (@gulf_news) October 20, 2016
Clinton fires another salvo
Clinton to Trump: 'You encouraged espionage against our people'https://t.co/xuRNHAU2eW#USPresidentialDebate pic.twitter.com/nnDpoyQyyW— Gulf News (@gulf_news) October 20, 2016
Clinton: Trump 'choked' in Mexico president meeting
Clinton tells Trump he 'choked' by not mentioning wall to Mexican president. Strong stuff.https://t.co/xuRNHAU2eW#USPresidentialDebate pic.twitter.com/G4pNXDydmu— Gulf News (@gulf_news) October 20, 2016
Trump reiterates plan to build wall
Trump gets going on immigration.
'We need the wall'
'We're going to get drug dealers out'https://t.co/xuRNHAU2eW#USPresidentialDebate pic.twitter.com/6a57X3vCZi— Gulf News (@gulf_news) October 20, 2016
Quiet start on Supreme Court
It's a quiet start. No mudslinging yet. Clinton's outfit still sparkling clean ...https://t.co/xuRNHAU2eW#USPresidentialDebate pic.twitter.com/vp18Mbf5q1— Gulf News (@gulf_news) October 20, 2016
Trump and Clinton are on stage
Here we go. First topic, the Supreme Court ...
Melania Trump takes her seat
Donald Trump's wife, Melania, has taken her seat. we are ready to go ...
Melania Trump enters the auditorium. Credit: AP
Clinton has everything to lose
Hillary Clinton has just arrived at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, cutting it a little bit fine.
The Democratic candidate is being told not to play it too safe by the experts. She has a bit lead, but she cannot just let Donald Trump throw mud at her all night.
In a way, Trump has nothing to lose, Clinton has everything.
Debate star watch: Danson in the audience
Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen have just taken their seat in the audience.
Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen sit in the audience. Credit: AP
We are approaching half an hour away now from the final debate. The experts say the format could favour Trump, with plenty of room for unstructured debate.
It means the Republican's penchant for butting in will perhaps come to the fore.
Hillary Clinton has been less keen to talk over her opponent. One for the moderator to keep an eye on.
Palin to attend debate
Donald Trump's guest list for the third and final debate now includes Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin and a woman who has accused former President Bill Clinton of sexual harassment.
Sarah Palin. Credit: AFP
The GOP nominee's campaign confirms that the former vice presidential candidate will be in the audience. Also in attendance will be Leslie Millwee, a former Arkansas local reporter who claimed in an interview this week with Breitbart News that she was sexually assaulted by Bill Clinton three times in the 1980s.
Also attending is the mother of a man who was killed in the attack on the U.S. compound in Benghazi and President Barack Obama's half-brother.
How the Rolling Stones accidentally assisted debate organisers
Mick Jagger on stage in Indio, California. Credit: AFP
Mick Jagger's sore throat may have helped ease a bad case of congestion Wednesday.
The Rolling Stones canceled its concert in Las Vegas when frontman Jagger was told by doctors to rest his voice after coming down with laryngitis.
Some 20,000 fans were expected to descend on the T-Mobile Arena on the Las Vegas Strip about the same time authorities were closing roads and freeways surrounding the nearby Thomas & Mack Center. The University of Nevada, Las Vegas arena will be hosting Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump in the final debate of the presidential election.
About 1,000 people were expected inside the debate hall, and many more outside.
Authorities warned residents and tourists to prepare for blocked streets and detours around McCarran International Airport, at UNLV, and on some major roads crossing the busy Las Vegas Strip.
Tumultuous campaign drawing to a close
As the long and rancorous campaign lurches toward an end, Donald Trump gets one of his last opportunities in Wednesday night's final debate against Hillary Clinton to turn around a race that appears to be slipping away.
While Clinton's campaign is confidently expanding into traditionally Republican states, Trump's narrow electoral path is shrinking.
Already unpopular with a majority of Americans, the GOP nominee has been battered by recent revelations of his vulgar comments about women and a string of sexual assault allegations.
Clinton's challenge in the last of three debates will be to both keep up her aggressive efforts to paint Trump as unfit to be president and start moving to ease America's deep divisions, which have only been exacerbated during the campaign.
Debates so far: From 'Secretary Clinton' to 'the devil'
It was barely three weeks ago that Donald Trump opened the first presidential debate by asking, with faux deference, if it was OK to refer to his opponent as "Secretary Clinton."
By Round 2 he was back to calling Hillary Clinton "the devil."
Trump and Clinton shake hands before the first debate. Credit: AP
Since then, the Republican candidate's scorched-earth campaign tactics have left all sides wondering just how low things will go in the third and final presidential debate, coming up Wednesday night.
For her part, Clinton steps up as a flood of hacked emails provides an unprecedented real-time look into the machinations of a presidential campaign: hers.
Las Vegas a perfect setting for 'huge' debate
University of Nevada, Las Vegas graduate student Sparkle Payne took the scene in stride as she crossed campus Wednesday after psychology class.
Her campus was bustling in preparation for the final debate between presidential candidates Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton.
University of Nevada, Las Vegas, where the debate will take place. Credit: AP
Payne didn't plan to attend the event but wanted "everyone to tune in" to see Trump's antics.
"This is the biggest, most controversial debate," Payne said. "It's huge."
Security was tight, and some roads leading to campus were closed.
Uniformed police from Las Vegas and surrounding cities bunched in groups of six and eight in the campus quad, chatting with each other. Most had riot-gear packs strapped to their thighs.
Media and the first spectators gathered in front of the Thomas & Mack Center, where parking lots were bordered with a two-story barrier of tan metal shipping crates.
Taco truck protest at Trump's Vegas hotel
Some of the action before the third and final debate was happening away from the UNLV campus that is playing host to the televised event.
On Wednesday afternoon several taco trucks lined up outside the Trump Hotel, about 5km from the campus and just off the Las Vegas Strip.
A protestor holds a sign at the Wall of Tacos demonstration in front of the Trump International Hotel, Las Vegas. Credit: Reuters
The food trucks joined Grammy Award-winning band Los Tigres Del Norte, the Rev. Jesse Jackson, progressive groups and union members to rally against the GOP candidate and to protest a fight over organizing the hotel's workforce.
In September, Marco Gutierrez, founder of the group Latinos for Trump, said if something was not done about his own "very dominant" culture, "you're going to have taco trucks on every corner."
On Tuesday the trucks fanned out across the city to register voters.
Trump’s continues dig for dirt on Clinton (and Obama)
Donald Trump has turned up the volume on his ominous warnings of a "rigged" election and his attacks on Hillary Clinton at his campaign rallies have become increasingly harsh and personal ahead of the final debate, including the suggestion that she was drugged or medicated at the last debate.
At an event in Colorado on Tuesday, he promised that the last debate is "going to be interesting."
After Trump invited women who accused former President Bill Clinton of sexual misconduct to the last debate, his campaign said he's having at this forum Malik Obama, the estranged Kenyan half-brother of President Barack Obama who is backing Trump.
A man dressed in a Donald Trump mask. Credit: AFP
He's also invited Pat Smith, the mother of one of the victims who died in 2012 attack on the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi who has said she blames the former secretary of state "personally for the death of my son."
The Washington Post reported that the billionaire also has invited Leslie Millwee, a former Arkansas television reporter who told Breitbart News that Bill Clinton groped her and rubbed up against her in 1980, when he was the state's governor.
Rapper Eminem savages Trump in new release
Rap superstar Eminem re-emerged Wednesday with a loaded lyrical attack on Donald Trump, in a nearly eight-minute song in which he also identifies with the Black Lives Matter cause.
The top-selling rapper of all time, Eminem has been relatively quiet in the past several years but wrote on Facebook that he was working on a new album.
Eminem uploaded on YouTube the new song, entitled "Campaign Speech," in which he offers his take on America in 2016 in a freestyle rap largely without a musical backdrop.
The notoriously foul-mouthed rapper stays true to his provocative style but says that tycoon turned Republican presidential candidate Trump poses the real threat.
Eminem has release a new song savaging Donald Trump. Credit: AFP
"Consider me a dangerous man / But you should be afraid of this dang candidate," Eminem raps.
"You say Trump don't kiss ass like a puppet 'cause he runs his campaign with his own cash for the funding.
"And that's what you wanted - A [expletive] loose cannon who's blunt with his hand on the button, who doesn't have to answer to no one," he raps, concluding: "Great idea!"
The 44-year-old rapper, whose last full-fledged album came out in late 2013, has rarely been overtly political in the past although he has made known his left-leaning sympathies in interviews.
Sex assault claims against Bill Clinton
A former TV reporter on Wednesday accused ex-president Bill Clinton of three sexual assaults in 1980, when Clinton was governor of Arkansas.
Her allegations, in a video clip posted on the pro-Donald Trump website Breitbart.com, appear just hours before the Republican presidential candidate debates his Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton, Bill's wife.
Leslie Millwee, a former reporter for local Arkansas TV station KLMN-TV, said she interviewed Clinton some 20 times in public when he was governor of the southern US state.
Donald Trump has tried to draw Bill Clinton’s history with women into the campaign. Credit: Reuters
Millwee – then known as Leslie Derrick – told Brietbart that Clinton visited the TV station and assaulted her in the editing room in all three cases.
"I was sitting in a chair," she said about what she described as the first assault. "He came up behind me and started rubbing my shoulders and running his hands down toward my breasts. And I was just stunned. I froze. I asked him to stop. He laughed."
On another occasion, she said, Clinton rubbed himself against her as she protested.
After the third assault, Clinton visited her apartment, she added, saying she refused to let him in.
Millwee said she had thought of coming forward when the Monica Lewinsky White House sex scandal broke in 1998, but refrained to protect her young children.
"I think there's still no accountability in the media for the behavior of the Clintons, and if it affects the media and affects the election, so be it," she said.
"I'm sure I'm not the only woman who went through this kind of things with Bill Clinton."
However, the ex-reporter gave a different version of the story in a book published in 2011, mentioning only that Bill Clinton touched her shoulder, according to Breitbart.
The Clinton campaign dismissed her accusations.
"I wouldn't be surprised if Donald Trump seeks to invoke this report tonight or in the coming days," Hillary Clinton spokesman Brian Fallon said on MSNBC.
"We expect that he'll do anything in the closing days. He said he's practicing a scorched earth approach to the campaign."
The new revelations surfaced as Trump faces a string of accusations of sexual misconduct. The bombastic billionaire has blamed the Clinton campaign and the news media for the stories.
Trump recruited Breitbart.com CEO Steven Bannon to be his campaign manager in August.
The format: All you need to know
When and where
Thursday, 5am UAE time at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Duration is 90 minutes
The two candidates will each be standing at a lectern, as they were in the first debate. There will be no commercial breaks in the broadcast.
Where to watch
Most major US networks will carry the debate on their channels and websites (main networks ABC, NBC, CBS, Fox and PBS; cable networks CNN, C-SPAN, Fox News, Telemundo; and websites such as Facebook, Hulu, Huffington Post, Politico, Twitter and Yahoo). YouTube will offer several live feeds on its streaming page.
The debate will be divided in 15-minute segments, dedicated to the following themes: debt and entitlements; immigration; economy; Supreme Court; foreign hot spots; and fitness to be president.
Chris Wallace, a 69-year-old veteran political reporter for Fox News, the most watched news network in the United States. He's expected to be tough on both candidates.
Ratings to beat
First debate on September 26: a record 84 million television viewers, according to Nielsen.
Second debate on October 9: 66.5 million viewers.
Final throw of the dice for Trump
Democrat Hillary Clinton and rival Donald Trump face off for their last presidential debate Wednesday with the Republican candidate spiralling downward in the polls amid allegations of sexual misconduct and wild charges of a “rigged” US election.
With just 20 days before Americans cast ballots November 8, polls showed Clinton widening her lead over the provocative billionaire.
The 90-minute debate at the University of Las Vegas, Nevada offers Trump what may be his last chance to roll the political dice and reverse a campaign that has been battered by a stream of allegations he groped and forced himself on women.
“This is our final shot, folks,” Trump told supporters Tuesday in Colorado.
Clinton has kept a low profile in recent days, shutting herself in with aides to prepare for the third televised debate of the campaign.
Moderated by Fox News journalist Chris Wallace, the event begins at 5am UAE time, before a televised audience expected to top 50 million.
The candidates will be asked about the economy, immigration, the Supreme Court, foreign flashpoints and their fitness to be president.
The past two debates quickly degenerated into highly personal attacks that pushed substantive policy issues to the side.
Clinton “should do what she did in the two first debates which was largely remain calm, deflect criticism and attacks and let Donald Trump continue to self-destruct,” said John Hudak, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution.
“If your opponent’s ship is sinking you don’t throw them a life preserver,” he said.
Trump undoubtedly will draw on the lessons of the past two debates, and sharpen his attacks on Clinton over Syria and Libya.
The 2012 jihadist attack on the US mission in Benghazi, Libya remains a burning issue among Republicans, who hold the former secretary of state partially responsible for the deaths of four Americans, including the ambassador.
Trump has invited Patricia Smith, the mother of an American killed in the attack, to attend the debate, as well as President Barack Obama’s Kenyan-born half-brother Malik, who supports Trump, campaign manager Kellyanne Conway said.
The move is a clear ploy to rattle the former secretary of state, much like Trump sought to do in the previous debate when he invited women who had accused former president Bill Clinton of past sexual misconduct.
New allegations emerged Wednesday, from a former reporter who claims Clinton groped her in 1980 when he was governor of Arkansas — potentially providing new fodder for Trump to attack the Democratic nominee over her husband’s past.
But Conway advised Trump to “focus” on the issues, and come out strong against Clinton herself.
She is “a known liar,” Conway told MSNBC. “She’s lied to Congress. She’s lied to the FBI. She lied to the Benghazi families. She lies and it’s always for political gain.”
Trump is likely to hammer Clinton over recent revelations from emails hacked from her campaign staff and released by WikiLeaks that exposed her closed-door speeches to Wall Street and showed her deliberations over free trade.
But Republican Senator Marco Rubio, acknowledging US government concerns that Russia had orchestrated the hacks, issued a stern warning about such a tactic.
“These leaks are an effort by a foreign government to interfere with our electoral process and I will not indulge it,” Rubio said in a statement.
“Today it is the Democrats. Tomorrow it could be us.”
An average of recent national polls shows Clinton with a seven point lead over Trump when the race includes third-party candidates Gary Johnson and Jill Stein.
Trump predicts an electoral surprise, or “new Brexit,” when Americans vote next month.
But as he’s lost ground, the New York real estate mogul has attacked the election process itself, complaining of a conspiracy to steal the election from him.
“The press has created a rigged system and poisoned the minds of the voters,” he said Tuesday.
“Either we win this election or we lose the country.”
The White House is increasingly concerned that Trump and his supporters will not recognize the election’s outcome, plunging the country into a political crisis.
In a scorching rebuke, Obama told Trump on Tuesday to “stop whining” and go make his case to voters.
“I have never seen in my lifetime or in modern political history any presidential candidate trying to discredit the elections and the election process before votes have even taken place. It’s unprecedented,” the president said.
Ohio Governor John Kasich, who lost to Trump in the Republican primaries, weighed in to slam his talk of election rigging.
“That’s like saying we never landed on the moon,” Kasich told CBS News.