The Latest: GOP critic of Trump offers congratulations




WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on the 2016 presidential election. (All times EST):

10:05 a.m.

One of Donald Trump's harshest Republican critics says America "demanded disruption" by electing the billionaire businessman as president.

In a statement Wednesday, Sen. Ben Sasse of Nebraska congratulated Trump. Sasse said he and his family will pray that Trump "will lead wisely and faithfully keep his oath to a Constitution of limited government."

Sasse said he will now do everything he can to hold Trump to promises he made during the campaign. Among them are replacing President Barack Obama's health care law, nominating judges "who reject law-making by unelected courts," and fighting for ethics reform "that upends cronyism" and enacts term limits.

Sasse last month had called on Trump to abandon his presidential bid after the release of old video footage that featured Trump making vulgar sexual comments.

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8:40 a.m.

Trump campaign manager Kellyanne Conway says Hillary Clinton had more money and more people on the ground — but, Team Trump "outworked them, and frankly, we outsmarted and outclassed them in some cases."

Conway appeared on Fox News on Wednesday to analyze Donald Trump's stunning defeat of Clinton. Conway said the Republican billionaire "did a great job sealing the deal."

She said: "Take it to the bank — candidates matter. There's no substitute for a great candidate."

On CNN, Conway urged Trump's critics to "lay down their verbal firearms."

She said: "Give him a chance as your president-elect like we all did with President Obama and we all did with President Bill Clinton."

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8:07 a.m.

Hillary Clinton will be speaking to her supporters Wednesday morning. It will be her first public remarks since her stunning defeat to Donald Trump in the U.S. presidential election.

Her campaign says she'll speak to staff and supporters at a New York hotel at 10:30 a.m.

Clinton did not give a formal concession speech. But she did call Trump early Wednesday to congratulate him on his victory in Tuesday's election.

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7:40 a.m.

Donald Trump's campaign manager Kellyanne Conway says the president-elect had a "gracious exchange" with Hillary Clinton and a "warm conversation" with President Barack Obama.

In a pair of interviews on ABC and NBC News Wednesday, Conway said Clinton's top aide, Huma Abedin, called her late Wednesday and connected Clinton with Trump. She said Clinton "congratulated him for his victory," and he told Clinton that she is "very smart, very tough" and had "waged a tremendous campaign."

Conway said the Trump campaign isn't upset that Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton hasn't yet made a public concession speech.

Trump said during the campaign that he would assign a special prosecutor to investigate Hillary Clinton. But Conway told ABC's Good Morning America, "we have not discussed that at all."

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7:15 a.m.

President Barack Obama has invited President-elect Donald Trump to meet with him at the White House on Thursday.

The president plans to address Trump's victory in a statement from the White House on Wednesday.

The White House says Obama called Trump from his residence in the White House early Wednesday to congratulate him. White House spokesman Josh Earnest says the Thursday meeting is to discuss the presidential transition.

Obama also called Hillary Clinton. The White House says Obama conveyed admiration for the "strong campaign she waged throughout the country."

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6:45 a.m.

Becoming president-elect hasn't stopped Donald Trump from tweeting.

Trump pledged in a tweet Wednesday morning: "The forgotten man and woman will never be forgotten again. We will all come together as never before."

Trump has been an avid user of Twitter, often using it during the campaign to attack opponents and critics in harsh terms.

His account did look different Wednesday: His Twitter profile now identifies him as "president-elect of the United States."

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6:15 a.m.

President Barack Obama is congratulating Donald Trump on his victory in becoming the president-elect.

Trump campaign manager Kellyanne Conway says Obama called Trump early Wednesday while he was speaking to his supporters in New York, and so Trump called him back after he left the stage.

She said the two had what she described as a "very nice talk." She said they would meet possibly on Thursday.

White House press secretary Josh Earnest had told reporters traveling aboard Air Force One last week that the president was leaving his schedule open on Wednesday and Thursday for a possible meeting with the president-elect.

On Tuesday night, Trump said that he had received a call from his opponent, Hillary Clinton. In his remarks to supporters, he praised her for a hard-fought campaign and said Americans owe her a major debt of gratitude for her long service to the country.

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3:45 a.m.

Russian President Vladimir Putin is giving a thumbs-up to president-elect Donald Trump's victory.

In a brief statement Wednesday, the Kremlin said Putin has sent Trump a telegram to congratulate him on winning. Putin expressed "his hope to work together for removing Russian-American relations from their crisis state."

Putin also says he has confidence that building a constructive dialogue between Moscow and Washington — one based on principles of equality, mutual respect and a real accounting of each other's positions — is in the interest of both nations and the world.

Trump has drawn criticism for repeatedly praising Putin's leadership and advocating a closer working relationship with Russia despite its record of human rights abuses and recent military incursions in Ukraine and Syria.

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4:10 a.m.

Muslim Advocates, a national legal advocacy and educational organization based in Oakland, California, is denouncing Donald Trump's victory, saying his views violate the foundation of America's democracy.

In a statement issued after Trump appeared at a New York hotel to celebrate his victory, the group said it has repeatedly expressed concern about what it said were "undemocratic and unconstitutional policies" proposed by candidates, such as banning Muslims from the U.S. and vilifying Mexican Americans.

The group vowed to use every legal tool available to protect the country against unconstitutional and undemocratic action.

The Republican president-elect has accused Mexico of sending rapists and other criminals across the border. And he called at one point for a "total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States."

The group says in a statement: "If President-elect Trump wants to bring America together and be a leader for all Americans, he will need to disavow these dangerous proposals and ideas."

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4:47 a.m.

Despite Donald Trump's sharp criticism of NATO during the campaign, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg says he's looking forward to working with the president-elect.

Trump has questioned whether NATO, an alliance of Western nations formed to counter the former Soviet Union, is outdated.

"We face a challenging new security environment, including hybrid warfare, cyberattacks, the threat of terrorism," Stoltenberg said in a statement. "U.S. leadership is as important as ever. ... A strong NATO is good for the United States, and good for Europe."

In July, Trump said the United States might abandon its NATO military commitments, including the obligation to defend members against attacks. After that, Vice President Joe Biden said he had met with the presidents of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia to reassure them that Trump doesn't represent America.

Biden said the three presidents were "scared to death" about the prospects of a Trump presidency and whether he would maintain the country's commitments to its NATO allies if they faced aggression from Russia.
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