Democratic Senate nominee fires back after Donald Trump calls her state's capital city a 'war zone'

Donald trumpMark Wallheiser/Getty ImagesDonald Trump at a campaign rally in Florida.

Pennsylvania’s Democratic Senate nominee, Katie McGinty, took issue with Donald Trump’s recent description of her state’s capital city as a “war zone.”

In an interview with Business Insider on Wednesday, McGinty characterised Trump’s comments about Harrisburg as reductive, saying that his criticisms would not help him win over voters in “Rust Belt” states the Republican presidential nominee says he’ll win handily.

“Donald Trump is ultimately going to fail to fool people who he is trying to fool,” McGinty said when asked about Trump’s comments.

“He’s out of touch with both the struggle as well as the successes of a place like Pennsylvania. In terms of successes, we’re extremely proud to have some of the best colleges and universities not only in the country, but in the world,” she added.

McGinty also asserted that Trump’s restrictive trade policy and pro-manufacturing posturing is hypocritical, considering that he produces some of his own consumer products overseas.

“He’s got a lot of bluster and rhetoric, but his record demonstrates he doesn’t have a clue beyond that. Anybody who makes his shirts in China, and his ties in Bangladesh has nothing real and genuine to offer. The working families who are looking for a shot at a good paying family — they need jobs. And Donald doesn’t have a clue about that,” McGinty said.

Trump’s original comments about Harrisburg sparked immediate backlash among Pennsylvania officials.

In a statement earlier this week, Harrisburg’s director of communications, Joyce Davis, knocked Trump for “disparaging” the city.

“Mr. Trump has made an unfortunate mistake in disparaging Pennsylvania’s capital city after a mere glance from the window of his aeroplane,” Davis said. “Harrisburg is renowned as the heart of our commonwealth and a capital of unique beauty and charm. Mr. Trump should know that Harrisburg and its residents are an integral part of the United States, which he is vying to lead.”

McGinty is one of several down-ballot Democratic candidates locked in tough races with Republican incumbents across the country. The Democratic Senate candidate has repeatedly attempted to tie Trump to Sen. Pat Toomey, who has not endorsed Trump and has attempted to run as a moderate on issues like gun control.

Recent polls show the race virtually tied, with some recent surveys conducted after the Democratic National Convention giving McGinty a slight lead over Toomey.

“The campaign season hasn’t even really started, and Pennsylvania is already saying, loudly and clearly, that the Trump-Toomey ticket is completely unacceptable,” McGinty’s communications director, Sean Coit, said in a statement on Thursday.

“It probably doesn’t help that Donald Trump, just in the last week, said that Pennsylvania is ‘rusting and rotting’ and that Harrisburg looks like a ‘war zone,'” he added. “That’s the guy Pat Toomey wants to be our President, so his poll numbers are just going to get worse.”

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