Election 2016 read more

The biggest moments

The candidates talked abortion, SCOTUS, and sexual assault in the final presidential debate

The biggest moments of the third presidential debate

Trump calls sexual assault claims “totally false”

Donald Trump repeatedly denied that he had ever sexually assaulted any of the nine women who have accused him over the past several days. “Fiction,” “lies,” and “totally false,” he said. “I didn’t even apologize to my wife, because I didn’t do anything,” he said and explained that the accusers must want “10 minutes” of fame or they were put up to it by Hillary Clinton’s campaign.

“Donald thinks belittling women makes him bigger,” Clinton responded.

“He goes after their dignity, their self worth, and I don’t think there’s a woman anywhere who hasn’t felt that,” Clinton added. The rejection of Donald Trump on Election Day, she said, is an opportunity “to demonstrate who we are.”

Clinton said that Trump’s denial fell into his long pattern of refusing to accept responsibility and refusing to apologize. She quoted Trump’s statements from this past week that he could not have sexually assaulted certain women because they were not attractive enough (Trump denied he said that, too). 

Trump’s culturally insensitive use of the word “hombres”

Here it is.

How Clinton and Trump would approach crucial Supreme Court nominations

The candidates walked out on the debate stage ready for battle. The first question was on the Supreme Court — specifically what role the court should have in the country and how the Constitution should be interpreted.

Clinton argued that the court should “stand on the side of the American people,” which she clarified meant siding with the rights of women, backing LGBT rights, and moving against the Citizens United ruling on money in elections.

Trump was also ready for the question — sort of. He acknowledged that the Supreme Court was “what it’s all about,” especially the Second Amendment, “and all the other amendments.” He added that it’s also “all about the Constitution, so important, and the Constitution the way it was supposed to be.”

Trump and Clinton have each put forward lists of possible SCOTUS nominees. Trump’s picks have leaned toward a more literal reading of the Constitution, in the tradition of the late Justice Antonin Scalia. Clinton’s SCOTUS choices, meanwhile, are more progressive and have focused on issues supporting women and reproductive rights issues. Whoever is inaugurated in January will appoint at least one justice, and possibly as many as three, to the bench.

The candidates go head to head on abortion

Trump said he would appoint Supreme Court Justices to overturn Roe v. Wade, but in the past he has expressed pro-abortion views.

Here’s a video of Trump in 1999 saying he hates abortion, but he is “pro-choice in every respect.”

Clinton, meanwhile, doubled down on her support for partial-birth abortion, which she described as a “woman’s constitutional right” which the government had “no business” interfering in.

“I think it’s terrible,” Trump said. “In the ninth month, taking the baby out of the womb of the mother just prior to the birth of the baby.” Clinton called his comments “scare rhetoric.”

Abortion remains a starkly divisive issue in the American electorate. A recent Gallup poll found that 50 percent of Americans thought abortion should be legal in some circumstances, 19 percent wanted an outright ban on abortion, and 29 percent wanted it legal in all cases. This is approximately the same as in the 1970s.

Here’s the moment Clinton called Trump a “puppet” for Putin

Insults and the fate of millions of undocumented immigrants

“He choked,” Hillary Clinton said of Donald Trump, clearly baiting him to become undisciplined when asked about his visit to Mexico. Trump met with the Mexican president last month and Clinton insinuated that Trump did not have the nerve to bring up his border wall.

The candidates had a substantive exchange on the future of immigration policy in the United States and the fate of the millions of undocumented immigrants.

Trump said “We have some bad hombres here, and we’re gonna get ’em out.” He restated the need for a Southern border wall because without it “we don’t have a country.”

But in a clear departure from past statements, Trump said that after the wall was built he would make a determination about the other undocumented immigrants. In the past, Trump had said that a “deportation force” would move all undocumented immigrants outside of the United States.

Clinton ignored Trump’s moderation and attacked his past positions, saying that busing millions of families out of the U.S would “rip the country apart.” She proposed bringing “everybody out of the shadows,” which would allow all undocumented immigrants to obtain American citizenship.

Clinton calls Russia’s alleged role in the U.S. election “deeply disturbing”

When Clinton was asked whether she supports open borders, she pivoted to an entirely different issue — Russia’s alleged role in hacking American government documents and releasing them to WikiLeaks. Clinton called the allegations that the Russian government has interfered in the American election “deeply disturbing.”

“Never has anything like this happened in any other election,” she said.

The former secretary of state also taunted Trump about his close relationship with Putin, saying that the Russian leader wants a “puppet” in power in the United States. At this, Trump finally lost his cool. “You’re the puppet! You’re the puppet!” he snapped back.


FROM Wednesday:  Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump meet in Las Vegas for their third and final debate Wednesday night. Beginning at 9:00 p.m. EST, you can stream the debate live here.

Moderator and Fox News anchor Chris Wallace said the debate will focus on six topics: debt and entitlements, immigration, economy, the Supreme Court, foreign hot spots, and fitness to be president. Fact-checkers described the first two presidential debates as representative of a “post-truth era” in campaign politics, and Wallace has already said, “I do not believe that it’s my job to be a truth squad.”

VICE News will be covering the debate live.

M-F 7:30PM HBO