Clinton warns of 'Trump recession'
© Getty Images

Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonFormer Obama adviser Plouffe predicts 'historical level' of turnout by Trump supporters Poll: More Republican voters think party is more united than Democratic voters Whoopi Goldberg presses Sanders: 'Why are you still in the race?' MORE on Tuesday warned that Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump fires intelligence community inspector general who flagged Ukraine whistleblower complaint Trump organization has laid off over 1000 employees due to pandemic: report Trump invokes Defense Production Act to prevent export of surgical masks, gloves MORE's economic proposals would plunge the U.S. into a recession, portraying the presumptive Republican nominee as unfit to manage the economy. 

"Liberals and conservatives say Trump's ideas would be disastrous," the Democrat said in Columbus, Ohio. "The Chamber of Commerce and labor unions. Mitt Romney and Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth WarrenOvernight Health Care: CDC recommends face coverings in public | Resistance to social distancing sparks new worries | Controversy over change of national stockpile definition | McConnell signals fourth coronavirus bill Democratic senators want probe into change of national stockpile description Democrats ask EPA, Interior to pause rulemaking amid coronavirus MORE, economists on the right, the left and the center all agree: Trump would throw us back into recession."

ADVERTISEMENT

"Trump would take us back to where we were before the crisis. He'd rig the economy for Wall Street again," she added. "That will not happen on my watch, I guarantee you."

Clinton’s speech was aimed squarely at one of the Republican’s biggest strengths: his business background. A Gallup poll earlier this month found 53 percent of voters would prefer Trump as president when it comes to the economy, compared with 43 percent who would prefer Clinton, making it one of the few areas where Trump has a distinct advantage.

She sought to close that gap in her speech, arguing at length that Trump’s success in the business world isn’t what it seems. 

"You might think that because he has spent his life as a businessman he'd be better prepared to handle the economy. It turns out, he's dangerous there too," she said.

"Just like he shouldn't have his finger on the button, he shouldn't have his hands on the economy." 

Clinton seized on an analysis released Monday by the credit rater Moody’s that predicted disastrous consequences from Trump’s economic proposals, including a “lengthy recession” and more than 3 million lost jobs. 

“One of John McCainJohn Sidney McCainDemocratic super PAC targets McSally over coronavirus response GOP senator suspending campaign fundraising, donating paycheck amid coronavirus pandemic Biden's pick for vice president doesn't matter much MORE’s former economic advisers actually calculated what would happen to our country if Trump gets his way. He described the results of a Trump recession: we would lose three and a half million jobs, incomes would stagnate, debt would explode, and stock prices would plummet.  And you know who would be hit the hardest: the people who had the hardest time getting back on their feet after the 2008 crisis.”

She also zeroed in on Trump’s comments about debt, portraying his corporate bankruptcies as a preview of what he would do to the country as president.

“He's written a lot of books about business. They all seem to end at Chapter 11. Ho figure," she quipped, drawing laughter and applause from the crowd.

Trump quickly rebutted Clinton in a rapid series of tweets and emails, which could be a sign that the businessman intends to run a more traditional campaign following the firing Monday of Corey Lewandowski. 

"While Clinton claims that Mr. Trump does not have the temperament to be President, she ignores her own lack of poise under pressure," one Trump press release stated while listing critical comments about Clinton made by a Secret Service agent.

Other Trump campaign releases linked Clinton to the Obama administration's "catastrophic" economic record and attacked her for promoting and pursuing the Iran nuclear deal. 

The Republican also announced that he’d deliver a “big speech” on Wednesday dissecting Clinton’s record. He had planned to give that speech last week but postponed it in aftermath of the Orlando shooting.

“Hillary says this election is about judgment. She's right. Her judgment has killed thousands, unleashed ISIS and wrecked the economy,” Trump tweeted. 

Clinton’s speech Tuesday was reminiscent of the one she delivered earlier this month attacking Trump’s national security record. In both speeches, she sought to portray the businessman as unfit to serve as commander in chief, in part by using his own words against him on issues like the minimum wage.

When rebuking Trump’s tax plan, Clinton said she was surprised by some of the Trump quotes her researchers sent her while planning the speech. 

"I said, 'Really? He said that?'' she said, recounting conversations with her researchers and speechwriters. 

"And then they'd send me all the background and video clips — so here it goes!"

She argued that Trump's tax plan would benefit wealthy people like himself, then pivoted to his refusal to release his tax returns. 

"You have to ask yourself — what is he afraid of? Maybe we'll learn he hasn't paid taxes on his huge income. ... Maybe he isn't as rich as he claims, or maybe he hasn't given away to charity as much as he brags about," she said.  

"Whatever the reason, Americans deserve to know before you cast your votes this November." 

Trump has said he won’t release his tax returns until the IRS completes an audit while dismissing the value of the documents, saying that “there’s nothing to learn” from them.

Clinton closed her speech by asking voters to imagine how Trump would react in a crisis, given that he is “thin-skinned and quick to anger.”

“Imagine him being in charge when your jobs and savings are at stake. Is this who you want to lead us in an emergency?” 

- Updated at 2:22 p.m.