RALEIGH, N.C., and GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — A confident Hillary Clinton spent her final day on the presidential campaign trail flanked by pop stars, her family and the Obamas, promising to try to “heal” the country if she’s elected president.
Across four rallies in three states, Clinton looked ahead to a potential victory, promising voters she would bring a divided country together as president and reflecting in the past tense on how ugly the campaign had been.
Donald Trump, expressing equal confidence, barnstormed across the country vowing to win Election Day, fundamentally change the country’s path and make his supporters’ dreams come true.
Both candidates’ promises culminated in a pair of rallies held in the wee hours of Tuesday morning.
Speaking at 1 a.m at North Carolina State University, Clinton shouted over the deafening cheers and foot-stomping of thousands of young supporters, who had been warmed up with performances by Lady Gaga and Jon Bon Jovi — including a duet of “Living on a Prayer.”
“This is sure worth staying up for,” she said, taking in the crowd.
The Clintons and the Obamas at a rally at Independence Mall in Philadelphia. (Photo: Andrew Harnik/AP)
“Tomorrow night this election will end, but I want you to understand, our work together will be just beginning,” Clinton said. “We have to bridge the divides in this country. As the Bible says, we have to repair the breaches.”
It was a lesson Clinton hammered home again and again on her final day on the trail, as she cast herself as a leader who could heal the nation after a long and brutal campaign. “We have so much divisiveness right now,” she said at a rally near Grand Rapids, Michigan. “We have to start listening to each other.”
She reminded her supporters that she wanted to be the president for “everyone,” not just those who vote for her.
“I regret deeply how angry the tone of the campaign became,” Clinton said at the largest event of her entire candidacy: another Monday rally with the Obamas and Bruce Springsteen that drew 33,000 people to Independence Mall in Philadelphia.
A supporter screamed out, “Not your fault!” Clinton laughed.
Meanwhile, Trump took the stage at 12:30 a.m. in a setting that was typical of any other one of his rallies this season: a sterile bright convention hall in Grand Rapids, Mich., featuring a simple stage with an American flag, a bleacher full of people behind him and a podium.
Donald Trump points to the crowd as he arrives to speak to a campaign rally in Grand Rapids, Mich. (Photo: Evan Vucci/AP)
Two hours earlier, Trump had appeared at what his campaign had originally envisioned as his send-off to his unlikely bid for the presidency: a large arena rally in downtown Manchester, N.H., surrounded by thousands of people, including his family, and a stage marked by laser lights and a fog machine.
But in the waning days of the campaign, as Trump sought to find a path to 270 electoral votes, his campaign added a last minute stop here in Michigan, hoping to turn a traditional blue state red for the first time since 1988. It was his ninth state he visited in a little over 24 hours.
“If you think you’re going to get a regular speech at 1 a.m., you’re crazy,” Trump declared as he took the stage. But that’s exactly what the GOP nominee gave: the same stump speech he’s been giving for weeks.
Introduced by his running mate, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, the GOP nominee attacked “crooked” Hillary Clinton as a slave to special interests. He called her a corrupt politician whose use of a private email server is likely to spawn in