Trump Adds Congressional Term Limits to Ethics Reform Plan

At a Colorado rally, the candidate told the crowd that his campaign is about "rejecting the elitism" of the establishment

"Either we win this election, or we lose our country," Donald Trump told his supporters at a rally in Colorado Springs Tuesday.

The GOP candidate called attention again to Hillary Clinton's email scandal, repeating his declaration that it's worse than Watergate.

He lashed out at the news media, claiming they're responsible for what he calls a "rigged" election system. He claimed that by publishing what he calls "totally false" stories about him and not covering the email scandal surrounding the Clinton campaign enough, the media have rigged the election in his opponent's favor.

His Tuesday afternoon speech emphasized rejecting the elitism of the political class. He repeated the ethics reform plan he rolled out Monday in Wisconsin, this time adding a sixth point: He'd impose term limits on Congress members via a constitutional amendment. Under the Trump plan, House members could serve up to six years, with 12 years for senators.

From Colorado Springs, he traveled to Grand Junction, where he hit on similar themes at a rally there.

Trump said he doesn't believe polls showing he's lagging Clinton in Colorado. Trump said that he keeps drawing crowds of thousands and thousands of people. And he predicted he will win one of the greatest victories in political history.

Elections veterans caution, however, that drawing large crowds doesn't equate to winning a general election.

Earlier Tuesday, in the midst of a series of tweets, Trump claimed that if he doesn't win the presidential election, "history will remember 2017 as the year America lost its independence." 

He will "#DrainTheSwamp" of corrupt Washington, the candidate tweeted.

It comes the day after he discussed his government ethics reform plan, which includes tighter restrictions on former members of Congress and ex-White House officials taking jobs as lobbyists. 

Trump has repeatedly called for Americans to reclaim their independence and has linked his candidacy to the "Brexit" vote in which the United Kingdom chose to leave the European Union. 

His remarks also come as he has doubled down on his unsubstantiated claims that the election will be "rigged." 

President Barack Obama condemned those remarks during a press conference with Italy's Prime Minister Matteo Renzi at the White House Rose Garden on Tuesday.

"I have never seen in my lifetime or in modern political history any presidential candidate trying to discredit the elections and the election process before votes have even taken place," Obama said. "It's unprecedented. It happens to be based on no facts." 

He called for Trump to "stop whining" and instead make his case to voters to be elected.

Meanwhile, in an interview that aired Tuesday on ABC Trump suggested House Speaker Paul Ryan has been undermining his campaign because he may be plotting his own White House run in 2020. 

Trump speculated that Ryan either didn't "know how to win" or "he wants to run in four years." 

The Republican nominee has been sharply critical of Ryan since the speaker suggested earlier this month that he would do little to help Trump's campaign.

Trump appeared in Ryan's home state of Wisconsin on Monday, and many in the crowd chanted "Paul Ryan sucks." 

Trump also claimed Ryan has not been supportive in investigating voter fraud, which the celebrity businessman had deemed a widespread problem without producing any evidence.

While there have been isolated cases of voter fraud in the U.S., there is no evidence of it being a widespread problem as Trump suggests.

Ryan and other Republicans expressed confidence in the voting systems, while state election officials said they are committed to conducting fair and impartial elections. 

In another interview Trump said if he wins the White House, he might meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin before his inauguration. 

Trump said in a Monday interview with talk radio host Michael Savage that if he defeats Hillary Clinton, he could see himself "meeting with Putin and meeting with Russia prior to the start of the administration."

Trump has been criticized repeatedly for his seemingly cozy relationship with Russia. 

But he said the tension between Putin and President Barack Obama is "a potentially catastrophic situation." 

Trump said Obama and Clinton "insult him constantly," adding, "No wonder he can't stand Obama and Hillary Clinton." 

Trump also said in the interview that Clinton has a "highly over-rated intellect."

Obama shot back at the White House that Trump's flattery of Putin was "unprecedented in American politics" and "out of step." 

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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