In a full-throttled rejection of Donald J. Trump’s economic policies, Hillary Clintonon Thursday accused him of feigning a connection to the working man, while advocating policies that would “work for him and his friends, at the expense of everyone else.”
Seeking to chip away at the perception among working-class white voters that Mr. Trump is the economic populist in the race, Mrs. Clinton said the Republican nominee merely paid “lip service” to being on the side of average Americans. She repeatedly contrasted his personal wealth with her own middle-class upbringing.
Mrs. Clinton referred to the tax cuts for the wealthy and corporations that Mr. Trump presented in a speech in Detroit on Monday, saying he “wants to give trillions in tax breaks to people like himself,” which would lead to broad cuts in spending on education, health care and environmental protection.
Although she has attacked Mr. Trump’s business record for months, her address on Thursday was a detailed point-by-point rebuttal to the economic proposals Mr. Trump unveiled this week.
The nearly back-to-back addresses on the economy put into sharp relief the candidates’ contrasting positions on an issue that has preoccupied voters throughout the lengthy presidential contest, with Mr. Trump seizing on economic dislocation in mixing populist anti-trade positions with traditionally Republican tax cutting, and Mrs. Clinton seeing a strong government hand in creating jobs and driving up wages.
She sharply criticized important elements of Mr. Trump’s tax cut plans and said his plan for business owners included what she called the “Trump loophole,” which would “allow him to pay less than half the current tax rate on income from many of his own companies.”
Mrs. Clinton’s remarks often transcended policy, as she sought to portray Mr. Trump as an out-of-touch businessman who would squash the working class. She talked about her grandfather’s years of labor in a lace mill in Scranton, Pa., and her father’s small drapery-printing business in Chicago.
“This is personal for me,” Mrs. Clinton said. “I am the product of the American middle class.”
But Mr. Trump remains a difficult opponent to critique in traditional ideological terms, and he enjoys some of his strongest support among working-class white voters who believe he cares about people like them.
On the Trail
Mr. Trump is the only candidate or running mate with a public schedule. He will hold rallies in Erie and Altoona, Pa.