Clinton takes aim at Trump over KKK stumble

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Hillary Clinton (CNN file photo)

MINNEAPOLIS — Hillary Clinton on Super Tuesday took aim at Donald Trump for not immediately repudiating former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke.

“I’m just speaking out against bigotry and bullying wherever I hear it. And I hear a lot of it from the Republican candidates. They seem to have forgotten completely about issues and they’re now running their campaigns based on insults,” Clinton said, taking questions from reporters. “It’s turned into a kind of one-upmanship on insulting and I don’t think that’s appropriate in a presidential campaign, and I’m going to speak up on it.”

The Democratic front-runner said that while Trump is doing well, she will “wait and see who they nominate.”

But she also took aim at Trump for stumbling when asked Sunday by CNN’s Jake Tapper to disavow support he has received from Duke, though he has since done so.

“I was very disappointed that he did not disavow what appears to be support from David Duke and the Klan,” Clinton said. “That is exactly the kind of statement that should be repudiated upon hearing it.”

Clinton wouldn’t comment on what states she believes she will win on Tuesday and batted away a question about whether her opponent, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, has a path to victory should he lose big.

“We are working hard everywhere,” Clinton said, responding to questions from her traveling press corps for the first time in 88 days. “All we can do is help people turn out for the primaries and the caucuses.”

The former secretary of state added that her campaign will wait to “see what voters decide in all these states that are lined up today” before they “take stock” of what it all means for Sanders’ campaign.

“But I’m going to keep going,” Clinton said. “I’ve got a lot of work to do next Tuesday and the Tuesday after that.”

Clinton’s campaign is confident the former secretary of state will do well in states like Arkansas, Alabama, Tennessee, Georgia and Virginia, all states she has visited in the last few days. They are anticipating Sanders will win Vermont, his home state, and see states like Minnesota, Oklahoma and Massachusetts as toss-ups.

Asked if she will ask Sanders to drop out should he have a bad night, Clinton said, “Everybody has to make their own decisions.”

After a dominant win in South Carolina on Saturday, Clinton’s campaign has been infused with increasing confidence.

Clinton’s comments came at Mapps Coffee & Tea, a small coffee shop in Minneapolis. Supporters mingled with Clinton before she took questions from the media.

Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton, an early supporter, worked the shop with her.

After buying a coffee, Clinton was confronted by a young woman who identified herself as Somali-America and questioned Clinton’s commitment to racial justice and past comments she has made. Clinton had a long conversation with the woman, explaining her views on race and noting the fact that her first speech as a candidate was on criminal justice reform.

The woman then questioned the authenticity of Somali-Americans who have endorsed Clinton’s run for president.

“Why don’t you go run for something then?” Clinton said before the woman quickly left the shop.