US presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton tore into her likely election rival Donald Trump as never before Thursday, saying his foreign policy is dangerously incoherent and labeling him unfit for office.
“He is temperamentally unfit to hold an office that requires knowledge, stability and immense responsibility,” Clinton said, cranking up the rhetoric in what is already a deeply acrimonious election season.
“This is not someone who should ever have the nuclear codes.”
Americans will go to the polls on November 8 to elect a new president, replacing Barack Obama who steps down after eight years in office.
Clinton and Trump are all but assured to be the Democratic and Republican party nominees.
Clinton, who formerly served as secretary of state, first lady and US senator, is vying to become the first female president in America’s 239-year history.
Trump, speaking at a rally in San Jose, California on Thursday night, ridiculed the Democrat’s speech.
“It was pathetic. It was so sad to watch. She was up there, supposed to be a foreign policy speech, it was a political speech, had nothing to do with foreign policy.”
Earlier, the businessman took to his favorite social media platform Twitter as Clinton was speaking: “Bad performance by Crooked Hillary Clinton! Reading poorly from the teleprompter! She doesn’t even look presidential!”
The 69-year-old celebrity real estate mogul burst onto the political scene last year, leveraging his fame to garner media coverage and dispatching much more experienced Republican rivals.
But in the process Trump has rejected many of the central tenets of foreign policy endorsed by both major parties.
He has questioned the utility of NATO, expressed admiration for Russian President Vladimir Putin and North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un and appeared cavalier about the prospect of nuclear weapons proliferation.
Clinton ridiculed her foe — painting him as a thin-skinned neophyte — and voiced incredulity at his views.
“I will leave it to the psychiatrists to explain his affection for tyrants,” she said, while trying to showcase her own grasp of world affairs.
“Even if I weren’t in this race, I’d be doing everything I could to make sure Donald Trump never becomes president because I believe he will take our country down a truly dangerous path,” she told an audience in San Diego, California.