Obama urges blacks to vote, protect his legacy

President Barack Obama is silhouetted as he speaks at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, Wednesday, Nov. 2, 2016. Obama is in North Carolina to help turn out the vote for Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton with a rally in Chapel Hill. It's the first of two visits Obama has planned this week to North Carolina. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

The Latest on the U.S. presidential race (all times EDT):
4:29 p.m.
Barack Obama is urging African American voters to see Hillary Clinton’s election as the way to protect his legacy as the first black president.

Obama says Republican Donald Trump would shred his accomplishments, while Clinton would continue on his path. Clinton is making the same argument as some Democrats worry over early voting figures that suggest black turnout may slip from its 2012 levels.
The president is taking his message to North Carolina on Wednesday, a day after he appeared in Ohio. He has upcoming trips to Florida. All three states have significant black populations that could decide the outcome.
Data shows black voters in North Carolina have cast fewer ballots than at this point in 2012, but the Clinton campaign says it can make up the difference by Election Day.
4:21 p.m.
When Donald Trump mentions his parents onstage, that’s a clue that he knows he’s approaching a pivotal moment in the campaign.
Fred and Mary Trump were clearly on the Republican nominee’s mind Wednesday in Orlando, Florida, six days before the Nov. 8 election. Trump opened his rally there by remembering them as “special, special people” and noted that they weren’t “on the journey” of his campaign. He thanked them for helping give him “a great life.”
Trump has previously invoked them in key moments, including during crucial primaries, when he became the presumptive Republican nominee and during his convention speech.
4:18 p.m.
President Barack Obama wants North Carolina voters to choose Hillary Clinton as his successor, but he’s also arguing for Democratic candidates down ballot.
North Carolina is the largest presidential battleground state that also has competitive races for governor and U.S. senator.
Obama singled out Democratic Senate nominee Deborah Ross and blasted Republican incumbent Richard Burr. Their matchup will help determine which major party controls the Senate in January.
The president blasted Burr for not opposing Trump and told a Chapel Hill audience they don’t want a senator who says “yes, sir, Mr. Trump.” Obama said a President Clinton will need more Democratic senators like Ross because Republicans are promising gridlock. Burr recently joined other Republicans who said they will block any Supreme Court nominee from Clinton.
4:09 p.m.
President Barack Obama is unloading on Donald Trump in battleground North Carolina and is suggesting to voters there that “the republic is at risk” if the GOP nominee makes it to the White House.
Obama told the Chapel Hill crowd Hillary Clinton is a “steady … tough” and well-prepared for the job. He said Clinton’s “heart has always been the right place,” while Trump doesn’t have the character for the job.
The president said Trump has many supporters who see him as “their voice.” But he argued that Trump has never cared about working people. Obama also cited Trump’s litany of boorish comments about women, his mockery of Republican Sen. John McCain’s status as a war hero and his spat with the family of a Muslim soldier killed in Iraq.
4:03 p.m.
Tim Kaine is blasting Republicans for their continued blockade of a Supreme Court nominee while campaigning in Iowa.
Iowa is home to Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley, chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee. Republicans have refused to allow a hearing on Merrick Garland, President Barack Obama’s nominee to fill an open seat. They’ve said the next president should be allowed to appoint someone.
But Republican Senate candidates have recently been suggesting they’d continue to block nominees if Democrat Hillary Clinton is elected.
Kaine called it a “most serious thing” for Republicans to “thwart” the laws around Supreme Court nominees. He says Republicans are violating the law setting the size of the court at nine justices.
3:44 p.m.
Some Republicans seem to be trying to delegitimize a Hillary Clinton presidency before it’s clear there will be one. They are threatening to block her Supreme Court nominees, investigate her endlessly or even impeach her.
Perhaps it’s no surprise in an election in which the GOP nominee, Donald Trump, has branded his opponent “Crooked Hillary,” and shouts of “lock her up!” are a staple at his rallies. Few Republicans appear eager to suggest a new era of bipartisan deal-making with a candidate widely seen by GOP voters as untrustworthy.
But the rhetoric is striking because newly elected presidents traditionally enjoy a honeymoon period with Congress and the public.
For Clinton, the honeymoon appears to be over before it’s clear she’ll be elected.
3:15 p.m.
George P. Bush is suggesting that the last two Republican presidents could vote for Democrat Hillary Clinton.
He’s referring to granddad George H.W. Bush and uncle George W. Bush, neither of whom have endorsed Republican Donald Trump. That’s a rare election year decision by former presidents of either party. And it leaves George P. Bush predicting he’ll be the only member of the dynastic political family who will be voting “straight party-ticket Republican” on Election Night.
Asked by the Associated Press why he thinks that, Bush said he was only speculating and suggested the family’s lack of endorsement is a key signal.
George P. Bush is the son of former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, the onetime presumed frontrunner for the Republican presidential nomination who was vanquished and labeled “low energy” by Trump.
3:14 p.m.
A Republican state lawmaker from Oklahoma is walking back his remarks after he posted a news story on Facebook critical of Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton and added the comment, “2 words … firing squad.”
State Rep. John Bennett, of Sallisaw, told The Associated Press that he posted the comment late Tuesday along with a link to a December 2015 article about Clinton’s response to the 2012 terrorist attacks in Benghazi.
Bennett on Wednesday described the comments as “sarcasm,” and said he wouldn’t wish death upon anyone or encourage violence toward any candidate.
But he also says he believes Clinton’s action in response to the Benghazi attacks “is nothing short of treason.”
A retired U.S. Marine, Bennett has faced criticism for recent remarks calling local Muslim leaders “terrorists.”
2:30 p.m.
President Barack Obama will spend the final day before the election campaigning for Hillary Clinton in New Hampshire.
Clinton’s campaign says Obama will hold a get-out-the-vote rally for Clinton on Monday afternoon. The campaign hasn’t announced where in New Hampshire the event will be held.
Clinton has been polling ahead of Trump in most polls in New Hampshire, but Clinton has put a renewed focus in the closing days on shoring up Democratic-leaning states.
Obama has a campaign stop planned for Clinton every day from now until Election Day — with one exception. On Saturday, he will rest.
2:25 p.m.
Mike Pence is honoring the two police officers killed in Iowa with a moment of silence.
The Republican vice presidential nominee referenced Donald Trump in saying, “As my running mate said this morning, an attack on those who keep us safe is an attack on us all.”
Pence noted that his uncle was a police officer, saying “police officers have always been my heroes.”
Pence is addressing a rally in Mesa, Arizona. He noted that Hillary Clinton will also be campaigning in the state later Wednesday.
He said, “I’m sure she’ll show up with that campaign of insults” against Trump.
2:05 p.m.
Donald Trump is urging some early voters for Hillary Clinton to change their ballots for him. But it’s unlikely enough will heed his call to affect the presidential race.
Trump urged early voters in Wisconsin, Minnesota, Pennsylvania and Michigan on Tuesday to change their ballots for him if they’re having a “bad case of buyer’s remorse” after voting for Clinton.
Those states do allow early voters to change their ballots. But the deadline was Tuesday in Minnesota and deadlines in the other states are fast approaching.
Election officials say voters rarely change absentee ballots. University of Wisconsin-Madison political scientist Barry Burden says he doesn’t expect large numbers of people will change their minds this year. He said early voters tend to be especially enthusiastic about their favorite candidate.
2 p.m.
A group of 62 retired senior military officers is raising concerns about potential links between Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin. They are calling on the Republican candidate to release his tax returns to determine if there are financial ties to Moscow.
The officers, who range in rank from one-star to four-star generals and admirals, question whether a Trump presidency would serve national security interests or his organization’s bottom line.
In a letter, they say Trump has taken actions to benefit Russia, including his refusal to acknowledge intelligence conclusions that recent cyber hacks into the Democratic National Committee were tied to the Kremlin.
The letter was signed by a number of combat-decorated officers as well as several who have been involved in politics in recent years, including retired Gen. Wesley Clark.
12:55 p.m.
Donald Trump is urging his supporters “to pretend we’re slightly losing” in order to drive up enthusiasm in the crucial battleground of Florida.
The Republican presidential candidate claimed “we’re way up in Florida,” but then urged his voters to not get complacent.
Trump said: “Ok ready? Pretend we’re down! Pretend we’re down!”
Most polls show a close race in Florida between Trump and Hillary Clinton.
The downtown Miami rally, held under a blazing noon sun, was the first of three rallies Trump was holding Wednesday in Florida. It’s a state he must win to capture the White House.
He’s made repeated visits to the Sunshine State in recent weeks and is slated to have another rally in Jacksonville on Thursday.
12:20 p.m.
A newly released hacked email from the Clinton campaign shows that a State Department aide appeared to coordinate with campaign advisers hours before Hillary Clinton’s use of private emails were first detailed in a news account.
The email released Wednesday by Wikileaks shows the aide provided Clinton staffers with the agency’s official response to a New York Times reporter. That was ahead of the newspaper’s March 2015 story that Clinton had used private email to conduct all of her work-related business as secretary of state.
Wikileaks has been releasing thousands of emails stolen from campaign chairman John Podesta.
State Department spokesman John Kirby said the department would not comment on “alleged leaked documents.” But he noted that the department has had to communicate with Clinton’s representatives “to ensure accuracy.”

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