Here’s a Preview of How Donald Trump Could Use Hurricane Matthew to Attack Hillary Clinton

The Category 4 hurricane is expected to make landfall on Thursday night.

Mike Segar/Reuters/ZUMA

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Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump have announced they are pausing their campaign events while they wait to see if Hurricane Matthew, the Category 4 storm now barreling through the Caribbean, makes landfall in the United States Thursday evening. That doesn’t mean either presidential candidate is expected to remain idle as the storm continues to intensify. In fact, both campaigns are reportedly trying to figure out how to effectively demonstrate strength, without appearing to exploit a potential catastrophe for political points.

Clinton is already taking some heat, after it was revealed her campaign purchased television spots on the Weather Channel ahead of the storm. Trump has so far restricted himself to sending best wishes to residents, urging them to remain safe. But a glimpse of his past remarks during times of disaster offer a preview of how he could respond should Matthew hit land. In the past, he has used hurricanes and other natural disasters as opportunities to attack President Barack Obama and re-up his favorite conspiracy theories:

While it remains to be seen if Trump will stick to his current restraint, if this year has taught us anything, it’s that Trump’s inflammatory statements and his self-congratulations are his most predictable trait.  And then, of course, there’s his generosity.

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Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

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