Kellyanne Conway, Donald Trump's campaign manager, attempted Thursday to shift focus onto the presidential candidates' economic plans, arguing that Hillary Clinton's proposals are not what many Americans want.
Speaking with CNBC the morning after the third and final presidential debate — the last major set piece before the November election — Conway said she thought voters should instead key into Trump's message that he is the best candidate for the American economy.
"I thought the richest part of the whole debate last night was about money, was about the fact that (Clinton) has doubled down on raising taxes, and she's got this ridiculous 5 percent extra tax on people she considers to be super wealthy," Conway said. "She'll keep the Obamacare penalty right in its place — it's killing small-business owners and people who aspire to be small-business owners."
Trump, meanwhile, "laid out his 25 million-job creation plan over 10 years, energy unleashing, he's talked about certainly getting rid of the Obamacare penalty on Day One. He's going to reduce taxes on the middle class, he's going to get economic growth past its anemic stage into a 3 or 4 percent," Conway said.
Those proposals to grow the economy and create jobs "are the issues that affect everyday Americans," Conway said. Therefore, she added, many media outlets were wrong to focus their post-debate analysis on Trump's refusal to signal if he would accept the results of an election were he to lose.
"If the mainstream media is focused on, as they usually are, one thing Donald Trump said, or one thing he tweeted, or one thing — it's really malfeasance," she said.
"It was an entire debate about the issues that the millions in poverty, the millions who don't have health insurance, and the tens of millions who say everyday life is unaffordable, that they feel less prosperous and less safe than they did when Obama got there eight years ago — and she's looking for his third term," Conway said. "It's just derelict of duty to not cover everything that was discussed last night."
For its part, the Clinton campaign has repeatedly hammered Trump's economic plan, which several nonpartisan groups have deemed more negative for the country than Clinton's.
Speaking with CNBC earlier this week, Democratic vice presidential candidate Tim Kaine chided those who argued that Trump would be better for the economy than Clinton.
"I can't imagine any savvy financial person who thinks that the Trump plan is going to be better when the independent analysts, who are pretty sharp at this, say it will be dramatically worse," he said at the time, adding that the Republican nominee's economic plan would actually "raise taxes on millions of middle-class families."