Trump, Clinton scoop up major wins on 'Super Tuesday'
Updated: 2016-03-02 08:34
Democratic presidential candidateHillary Clinton(L) and Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump are seen in a combination of file photos taken in Henderson, Nevada, February 13, 2016 (L) and Phoenix, Arizona, July 11, 2015. [Photo/Agencies]
TRUMP WAVES OFF REPUBLICAN CRITICISM
At a news conference in a chandeliered ballroom at his seaside Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, Florida, Trump, who has never held public office, dismissed furious criticism aimed at him by establishment Republicans.
Faced with a party in turmoil over his ideas to build a wall between the United States and Mexico, deport 11 million illegal immigrants and bar Muslims from entering the country, Trump declared he had expanded the party by drawing in disaffected blue-collar Democrats who like his tough-on-trade rhetoric.
"I am a unifier," he said. "I would love to see the Republican Party and everybody get together and unify and when we unify, there's nobody that's going to beat us."
The rivals of both Trump and Clinton aim to knock them off their pedestals in contests ahead in Michigan, Florida and Illinois.
Trump waved off criticism from the country's top two elected Republicans, House Speaker Paul Ryan and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, over his delayed disavowal of an endorsement by David Duke, a former leader of the Ku Klux Klan, a white supremacist group.
"I've disavowed," Trump said. "I'm going to get along with Congress, okay? Paul Ryan, I don't know him well, but I'm sure I'm going to get along great with him. And if I don't, he's going to have to pay a big price, okay?" Trump said in remarks that could further inflame party tensions.
Clinton, who still faces a well-funded Sanders despite having taken control of the Democratic race, was eager to assail Trump as a way of getting Democratic voters used to the idea of her as the nominee.
"The stakes in this election have never been higher and the rhetoric we're hearing on the other side has never been lower," Clinton told supporters in Miami. "Trying to divide America between us and them is wrong, and we're not going to let it work."