The Latest: Trump: I meant the power of gun rights backers

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WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on the 2016 U.S. presidential race (all times EDT):

7:31 p.m.

Donald Trump says he was referring to the power of the gun rights movement when he said Second Amendment advocates could take action to stop Hillary Clinton. He says there's "no other interpretation."

Trump is responding to the controversy in a Fox News interview. Earlier Tuesday, Democrats accused him of encouraging violence against Clinton by saying gun rights advocates could act if Clinton wins and nominated anti-gun Supreme Court justices.

Trump says nobody at his rally thought he was saying anything other than that the gun rights movement is effective. In fact, some supporters at his rally, including one seated behind Trump on camera, reacted with surprise to his remark, suggesting they realized it could be taken another way.


7:30 p.m.

Mike Pence says reporters "latch onto" comments Donald Trump makes "each and every day of the week" to avoid talking about Hillary Clinton's failures.

Pence, Indiana's GOP governor and Trump's running mate, is alleging media bias at a rally in Pittsburgh just hours after Trump seemed to suggest violence against Clinton or judges she may nominate. Pence has not brought up those remarks to the crowd but earlier told a local news station Trump was "of course not" suggesting violence.

He says reporters are not appropriately covering the news that the father of the gunman in the Orlando nightclub shooting is supporting Clinton. Seddique Mateen, the father of Oman Mateen, attended one of Clinton's rallies this week in Florida.


7:05 p.m.

Donald Trump says his wife, Melania, will soon hold a news conference to discuss how she immigrated to the U.S. legally.

Melania Trump was born in Slovenia. Recent news reports have suggested there might be a discrepancy in the timeline she's described about how and when she came to the U.S. Mrs. Trump's former modeling agent says she obtained a work visa before she modeled professionally in the United States in the mid-1990s.

Trump says his wife "has got it so documented" that she wants to talk about it publicly. He says after the reports emerged, she wanted to address it quickly but that he urged her to "let it simmer" and let the media "go wild."

Mrs. Trump rarely speaks at length in public but gave a speech at the Republican National Convention. That speech was well-received but later marred by revelations parts of it were borrowed from a speech by Michelle Obama.


6:53 p.m.

Donald Trump is trying again to talk about the Second Amendment and Hillary Clinton.

Hours after suggesting that gun rights advocates could take action in such a case, Trump is saying in Fayetteville, North Carolina, that if Hillary Clinton wins the presidential race and gets to nominate Supreme Court justices, it will be a "very sad day" for the United States.

Trump is speaking at a rally in Fayetteville, North Carolina, hours after sparking a controversy by suggesting gun rights advocates could take action if Clinton wins and names anti-gun justices.

Earlier, Trump said: "If (Clinton) gets to pick her judges, nothing you can do, folks. Although the Second Amendment people, maybe there is, I don't know."


6:21 p.m.

Former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani says Donald Trump was not advocating violence against Hillary Clinton when he said there might be something gun rights supporters "can do" to stop Clinton if she is elected and nominates judges opposed to it.

He tells Trump supporters in Wilmington, North Carolina, that Trump was referring to people "with the power to vote against her."

Giuliani also said the media is "disgusting" for suggesting that Trump was trying to incite violence. He said the uproar over the televised comments is evidence that the press is biased against Trump.


6:15 p.m.

Democratic vice presidential nominee Tim Kaine says Donald Trump's comments that Second Amendment advocates might find a way to stop Hillary Clinton from limiting gun rights proves the Republican doesn't have presidential temperament.

Addressing reporters after a Tuesday event in Austin, Texas, Kaine said, "I just think it is a window into the soul of a person who is just temperamentally not suited to the task."

Trump suggested there may be something Second Amendment supporters "can do" to stop Clinton if she nominates judges opposed to it.

Kaine said those comments reflect "no understanding" of leadership, and dismissed Trump's campaign's response that what their candidate meant was the possibility of advocates unifying to defend gun rights.


5:34 p.m.

Mike Pence says Donald Trump was "of course not" encouraging violence against Hillary Clinton during a speech earlier Tuesday.

Trump's vice presidential nominee was asked about Trump's remark that there may be something Second Amendment supporters "can do" to stop Clinton if she nominates judges opposed it.

Pence says Trump was instead saying that gun rights supporters "should be involved in the political process and let their voice be heard." Pence made his comments to a reporter for NBC affiliate WCAU in Philadelphia following a Pence town hall in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.

Pence is responding to Trump's comments at a rally earlier today that, "If (Clinton) gets to pick her judges, nothing you can do, folks. Although the Second Amendment people, maybe there is, I don't know."

Asked if Trump was inferring violent acts against Clinton, Pence says, "Of course not, no."

Pence says, "he speaks from his heart, he speaks from his mind."


4:33 p.m.

Hillary Clinton is showing her support for former Democratic Party chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz with a visit to the congresswoman's campaign office.

Clinton visited Schultz's Florida campaign office Tuesday as she campaigned in South Florida. Schultz is facing an aggressive challenge in the Aug. 30 primary.

Clinton said she wanted to have Schultz in Congress "by my side" and praised her "fighting spirit."

Schultz resigned her DNC role before the party convention after leaked emails showed an apparent lack of neutrality in the primary race between Clinton and Sanders. She now has a role in the Clinton campaign.


4:10 p.m.

Donald Trump's campaign is saying the Republican nominee was touting the "amazing spirit" of Second Amendment supporters when he suggested they "could do" something to prevent Hillary Clinton as president from overturning the right to bear arms.

In North Carolina on Tuesday, Trump said that if Clinton were elected she would "essentially abolish" the Second Amendment.

He continued: "By the way, if she gets to pick her judges, nothing you can do, folks. Although the Second Amendment people, maybe there is, I don't know."

Clinton's campaign manager immediately denounced Trump's remarks, saying that the Republican nominee was trying to incite violence.

Robby Mook says: "This is simple_what Trump is saying is dangerous. A person seeking to be the President of the United States should not suggest violence in any way."

But Trump's communications director Jason Miller says the celebrity businessman was referring to the "power of unification."

He said: "Second Amendment people have amazing spirit and are tremendously unified, which gives them great political power. And this year, they will be voting in record numbers, and it won't be for Hillary Clinton, it will be for Donald Trump."


3:50 p.m.

Donald Trump is suggesting that if Hillary Clinton gets to pick federal judges as president, there is nothing that can be done to protect the right to bear arms.

But then he adds without elaboration that maybe supporters of the Second Amendment could figure out a way.

He says Tuesday at a rally in North Carolina, "By the way if she gets to pick her judges, nothing you can do, folks. Although the Second Amendment people, maybe there is, I don't know."

It wasn't immediately clear what Trump meant. His spokeswoman didn't immediately reply to a request for a clarification of his remarks.

The Republican presidential nominee made the comment Tuesday at a rally in Wilmington, North Carolina.

The Second Amendment provides a constitutional right to citizens to own guns.

During the event, he said falsely that Clinton "essentially wants to abolish the Second Amendment." Clinton supports some new restrictions on gun ownership, but has not advocated overturning the amendment.


3:35 p.m.

Hillary Clinton is calling on Congress to immediately return to Washington and pass legislation to combat Zika.

Clinton is asking Republican leaders to bring Congress back to either pass stalled bipartisan legislation or craft a new bill to provide emergency funding for testing, treatment and research on the disease.

The Democratic presidential candidate says she's "very disappointed" that Congress left for recess without passing legislation.

She also says that Donald Trump's remarks last week that Florida has the epidemic "under control" did a "great disservice" to efforts to fight the disease.

Clinton is touring a Miami health clinic close to the Wynwood neighborhood where 21 non travel-related Zika cases have been diagnosed.

Florida is an important battleground state in the presidential race.


2:50 p.m.

Donald Trump, in North Carolina, is stressing the need for stringent voter ID laws in the wake of a federal court ruling against the state's restrictive voting law.

Trump at a rally Tuesday in Wilmington asked "Why are we not having voter ID?"

He then told the crowd that he would "never ask you to vote 15 times" but implied that his opponent would. His comments come in the wake of last month's ruling that North Carolina's law was restrictive and targeted black voters.

North Carolina is petitioning the U.S. Supreme Court for a stay on the ruling.


2:30 p.m.

Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani is fanning the flames of Donald Trump's assertion that Hillary Clinton's hacked emails may have contributed to the death of an Iranian nuclear scientist.

The State Department denies there's any connection.

Giuliani, introducing Trump in North Carolina, said that Clinton was "extremely careless" and "lied" about not keeping any confidential information on her private email server. And he said that the name of Shahram Amiri appeared in the emails.

Iran said Sunday that Amiri was executed. Trump tweeted Monday that "Many people are saying that the Iranians killed the scientist who helped the U.S. because of Hillary Clinton's hacked emails." He didn't say who those people were.

Trump's running mate, Mike Pence, has also linked Clinton to the execution.


2:20 p.m.

Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani is making a surprise appearance to introduce Donald Trump Tuesday before a rally in the battleground state of North Carolina.

Giuliani called Trump, the Republican presidential nominee, the leader of "a movement" which would defeat Hillary Clinton this November.

But Giuliani quieted the Wilmington crowd when it began to shout "Lock her up!" the anti-Clinton chant that has become popular at Trump rallies since it started at last month's Republican National Convention.

Giuliani said the nation needed Trump to reform Washington, and that he was the right person to wield "a broom to clean the damn place out!"


1 p.m.

The father of the Orlando gay nightclub shooter was spotted at a campaign event for Hillary Clinton in central Florida.

Seddique Mateen was standing in a crowd behind Clinton during the Monday night event in Kissimmee, south of Orlando. A campaign official told The Associated Press on Tuesday that he wasn't invited to attend the 3,000-person, open-door public event and that the campaign wasn't aware he was there until it ended.

Mateen told news outlets after the rally that he loves "the United States."

Omar Mateen fatally shot 49 people and injured another 53 at Pulse nightclub on June 12. He was killed by law enforcement officers following a three-hour standoff.

The father says his family has been cooperating with investigators.

During her speech, Clinton expressed support for the survivors of the attack and the loved ones of those killed.


12:50 p.m.

Hillary Clinton is expanding her presidential battleground map to include Georgia and Arizona, according to officials aware of the plans.

A source with knowledge of the campaign's plans says aides at Clinton's New York headquarters spoke Monday with Democratic Party officials in Georgia and Arizona to discuss a six-figure investment across the two states. The source wasn't authorized to publicly discuss campaign strategy.

The move comes amid a shift in Clinton's favor since the July party conventions. Polls suggest Clinton has widened her national lead over Republican Donald Trump and positioned herself to compete even in some traditionally GOP-leaning states.

Arizona and Georgia have growing non-white populations. That, combined with Trump's struggles among white Republicans, gives Clinton an opening.

Both states also have Republican senators up for re-election this fall.

—By Lisa Lerer

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