Trump: ‘I’m afraid the election’s going to be rigged’

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Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally in Columbus, Ohio, on Aug. 1, 2016. (Jay Laprete/AFP/Getty Images)

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Donald Trump on Monday took his complaints about the “rigged” political system one step further.

“I’m afraid the election’s going to be rigged. I have to be honest,” Trump told voters in Ohio, a crucial swing state.

Trump’s comments Monday came as he decried Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders for endorsing Hillary Clinton in the Democratic primary, even as some Sanders supporters have continued to resist unifying behind the nominee. Trump has sought to siphon off Sanders supporters and draw them to his campaign.

Trump added that he has heard “more and more” that the November election will be rigged — suggesting to his supporters that the outcome of the election is out of the hands of voters.

Trump during the primary repeatedly slammed the “rigged system” he claimed was working against his campaign to capture the Republican nomination for president. He then pivoted to using that language to decry the nomination process on the left, accusing the Democratic Party of colluding with the Clinton campaign to keep Sanders from winning that party’s nomination.

Trump’s comments during the primary bolstered the impression that Trump, a political outsider, was leading the charge against a corrupt political system.

But his latest comments could hurt Trump’s general election campaign as his supporters might decide not to turn out to vote if the election is already “rigged” against their candidate.