WASHINGTON (AP) – The Latest on the U.S. presidential race (all times EDT):
The Senate’s top Republican is keeping his mouth shut about the latest controversies engulfing Donald Trump.
Mitch McConnell told a Chamber of Commerce audience Monday in his home state of Kentucky that “I don’t have any observations to make” about the presidential election.
McConnell has endorsed Trump, but had called upon him to apologize after his crude comments about women in a 2005 videotape were revealed Friday.
McConnell said that he’s keeping his own counsel. He said his observations “are immediately sort of spun around the world and I don’t have anything to add on the presidential race today.”
Senate Republicans are struggling to hold the chamber. Some GOP incumbents in tight races, such as Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire, have rejected Trump.
Conservative House Republicans have complained to House Speaker Paul Ryan that he and other party leaders are being too negative about presidential candidate Donald Trump.
The comments came in a conference call Monday. Two people involved in the call said California Rep. Dana Rohrabacher called Republican leaders “cowards” and said they must stop their defeatist attitude about Trump’s chances.
Another person involved in the call said the head of the Republicans campaign organization, Greg Walden of Oregon, noted that Trump’s poll numbers have been falling since his first debate with Hillary Clinton. The person said Walden said he expects even more erosion in Trump’s numbers now.
The people on the call spoke on condition of anonymity because the call was private.
-By Alan Fram in Washington
Speaker Paul Ryan is not un-endorsing Donald Trump. And his office says he’s not conceding that Hillary Clinton will be the next president.
Ryan told Republican lawmakers in a conference call that he will spend “his entire energy making sure that Hillary Clinton does not get a blank check with a Democrat-controlled Congress.”
Several pro-Trump lawmakers interpreted that as a defeatist attitude. They spoke on condition of anonymity because the conversation was private.
Ryan said on the call that he does not plan to defend the Republican nominee or campaign for him over the next 30 days.
He said the Republicans’ House majority is in peril.
-By Erica Werner in Washington
House Speaker Paul Ryan is all but conceding Hillary Clinton will be the next president.
In a conference call Monday morning with House Republicans Ryan tells them that he will not defend Donald Trump or campaign with him for the next 30 days.
Instead he says he will spend “his entire energy making sure that Hillary Clinton does not get a blank check with a Democrat-controlled Congress.”
That’s according to a person on the call who demanded anonymity to describe the private conversation.
-By Erica Werner in Washington
Speaker Paul Ryan is telling congressional Republicans that he won’t defend Donald Trump now or in the future and will spend the next month defending his party’s House majority.
The Wisconsin Republican is holding a conference call with GOP lawmakers. Many of them are worried that their party’s presidential candidate is hurting their chances of winning re-election and is threatening their majority control of the House.
One person involved in the call says Ryan has not withdrawn his support for Trump, but has said he won’t defend him, either. Instead, he’ll campaign for GOP congressional candidates.
Another says Ryan has told lawmakers that he won’t campaign with Trump. And he is advising GOP candidates “to do what’s best for you in your district.”
-By Alan Fram in Washington
WikiLeaks has published more than 2,000 new emails purportedly belonging to Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman.
The anti-secrecy website has posted a link to what it calls “part two” of its release of John Podesta’s emails.
Last week, WikiLeaks made public potentially damaging revelations about Clinton’s paid speeches to Wall Street firms.
The emails showed Clinton telling a group that it’s acceptable for a president to project differing positions in public and private.
Clinton said in Sunday’s debate that she was alluding to Abraham Lincoln’s efforts to get Congress to abolish slavery.
One of the most vulnerable Senate Republicans says he hasn’t endorsed Donald Trump and called his crude, predatory comments about women “indefensible and appalling.”
In a statement Monday, Pennsylvania Sen. Pat Toomey sought to cast himself as an independent lawmaker who will cross party lines and is not a rubber stamp for “a very flawed president.”
Toomey is locked in a close race with Democrat Katie McGinty in a state where recent polls show Hillary Clinton leading Trump.
The Republican senator tried to use the statement to call out his rival, saying she hasn’t criticized Clinton and complained about the Democratic presidential nominee as dishonest and corrupt. He offered no proof for the corruption claim.
Republican vice presidential nominee Mike Pence is saying a moderator in Sunday’s debate “mischaracterized” his position on the U.S. role in Syria’s war, but the record shows otherwise.
Trump was asked Sunday about Pence’s statement in the vice presidential debate that the U.S. should be prepared to strike military targets of Syrian President Bashar Assad to intervene in the country’s humanitarian crisis.
Trump said that he and Pence hadn’t spoken about that, and he disagreed with his running mate.
Pence said Monday on Fox News that moderator Martha Raddatz mischaracterized his position. But Raddatz had accurately quoted him saying: “Provocations by Russia need to be met with American strength and…the United States of America should be prepared to use military force to strike the military targets of the Assad regime.”
Mike Pence is standing by Donald Trump, saying he never considered leaving the Trump ticket.
Following the latest presidential debate, Pence said Monday that he believes Trump is sorry for the crude and predatory language about women captured in a 2005 video that became public last week.
Pence told Fox News that Trump “stepped up” during the debate: “He showed humility. He showed strength. He expressed genuine contrition for the words he had used” in the video.
He later told CNN that he never considered dropping off Trump’s ticket. He said: “It’s the greatest honor of my life.”
Donald Trump’s campaign manager is walking back the Republican candidate’s threat during presidential debate to throw Hillary Clinton in jail if he is elected.
Kellyanne Conway said Monday that such a decision isn’t up to Trump. She said Trump’s threat “was a quip.”
Trump made the threat in Sunday’s debate, after Clinton said it’s good that someone with Trump’s temperament isn’t president. Trump responded: “Because you’d be in jail.”
Conway, speaking on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” also stopped short of confirming Trump’s vow to appoint a special prosecutor to look into Clinton’s email practices if he becomes president.
Conway said Trump was “channeling the frustration of thousands of voters he hears every day.”
Donald Trump is leaving no doubt that he’ll spend the election’s final weeks dredging up decades-old sexual allegations against Hillary Clinton’s husband, even if it turns off voters whose support he desperately needs.
Faced with questions in Sunday’s debate about his own predatory remarks about women, Trump accused Bill Clinton of having been “abusive to women” and said Hillary Clinton attacked those women “viciously.” He declared the Democratic nominee had “tremendous hate in her heart.”
Clinton tried at times to take the high road, glossing over Trump’s charges and accusing him of trying to distract from his political troubles.
Indeed, Trump entered the debate facing enormous pressure from the Republican Party and even his own running mate.
Copyright 2016 The Associated Press.