Hillary Clinton said she is not surprised by Donald Trump's recent sexist attacks against her, noting the business mogul and GOP presidential candidate has a "penchant" for such rhetoric.
"I really deplore the tone of his campaign, the inflammatory rhetoric that he is using to divide people, and his going after groups of people with hateful, incendiary rhetoric," the former secretary of state and Democratic presidential candidate said in an interview with the Des Moines Register published Wednesday. "Nothing really surprises me anymore. I don’t know that he has any boundaries at all. His bigotry, his bluster, his bullying have become his campaign. And he has to keep sort of upping the stakes and going even further."
Clinton added that while the remarks deserve criticism, they are par for the course coming from Trump.
"I don’t respond to him personally, because he thrives on that kind of exchange,” she said. “I think he has to answer for what he says, and I assume that others will make the larger point about his language. It’s not the first time he’s demonstrated a penchant for sexism. Again, I’m not sure anybody’s surprised that he keeps pushing the envelope."
On Monday, Trump said Clinton was "schlonged" by President Barack Obama during the 2008 presidential campaign ("Schlong" is Yiddish slang for penis.) He later defended his use of the term, insisting it is not vulgar.
Trump also criticized Clinton for using the bathroom during Saturday's Democratic debate.
"Where did Hillary go?" Trump said. "They had to start the debate without her. ... I know where she went. It's disgusting. I don't want to talk about it."
On Tuesday, Clinton sympathized with a fifth-grader who opened up about her problems with bullying during a town hall in Iowa, subtly taking a jab at her own bully, Trump.
"I really do think we need more love and kindness in our country," Clinton said. "That's why it's important to stand up to bullies wherever we are, and why we shouldn't let anybody bully his way into the presidency, because that is not who we are as Americans."
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