Johnstown, Jul 31: With 100 days left before the fall election, Hillary Clinton's campaign bus wound its way through Donald Trump's America as the Republican nominee picked a new fight with the bereaved father of a Muslim Army captain.
In a well-received Democratic convention speech, Muslim lawyer Khizr Khan said Trump has "sacrificed nothing and no one" for his country. Trump disputed that today, saying he'd given up a lot for his businesses.
"I've made a lot of sacrifices. I work very, very hard. I've created thousands and thousands of jobs, tens of thousands of jobs, built great structures," he said, in an interview with ABC's "This Week."
He added: "Sure those are sacrifices." Khan gave a moving tribute to their son, Humayun, who posthumously received a Bronze Star and a Purple Heart after he was killed by a suicide bomber in Iraq in 2004.
Trump also reiterated his criticism of Khan's wife, Ghazala, who stood silently on stage, wearing a headscarf.
"If you look at his wife, she was standing there. She had nothing to say. She probably, maybe she wasn't allowed to have anything to say. You tell me."
Ghazala Khan has said she didn't speak because she's still overwhelmed by her grief and can't even look at photos of her son without crying.
Trump's comments sparked immediate outrage on social media, both for attacking a mourning mother and because many considered them racist and anti-Muslim.
Post-convention it has become clear the presidential race will be fought in the struggling manufacturing towns, cities and rural farming communities of the Rust Belt, as Clinton used the days following her convention to try and win back some of the white working class voters that once made up a key piece of the Democratic Party's electoral coalition.
Trump's anti-immigrant, anti-diversity, anti-trade message has appealed to those voters, who feel frustrated with an economic recovery that's largely left them behind. Today, Clinton made stops in rural Western Pennsylvania, a largely white part of the swing state that traditionally votes Republican.
Clinton is playing up economic opportunity, diversity and national security. Democrats hammered home those themes this week with an array of politicians, celebrities, gun-violence victims, law enforcement officers and activists of all races and sexual orientation.
Their goal is to turn out the coalition of minority, female and young voters that twice elected Obama while blunting some of the expected losses among the white men drawn to Trump's message.
Trump has made plans to visit some of the same areas Clinton is campaigning in during her three-day bus tour through Ohio and Pennsylvania, scheduling Monday stops in Columbus and Cleveland.