Sen. Ted Cruz accused GOP frontrunner Donald Trump of “telling us he’s lying to us” after Trump aides told RNC leaders that their candidate will moderate his message.
“Donald is a New York liberal who is pretending to be a conservative to try to fool Republican primary voters,” Cruz told radio host Mark Levin and his listeners on Thursday. Levin prompted the statement when he referred to senior Trump aide Paul Manafort’s comments in a private meeting and asking Cruz, “Who the hell is Donald Trump?”
Trump’s senior aide, Paul Manafort, gave Republican National Committee members a new vision of a more moderate Trump to come: “The part that he’s been playing is evolving into the part that now you’ve been expecting, but he wasn’t ready for, because he had first to complete the first phase. The negatives will come down. The image is going to change.” The Associated Press reported on the meeting after obtaining a recording of the closed-door exchange.
On Levin’s show, Cruz gave Trump “a little bit of credit” for being candid: “He’s telling us he’s lying to us.” Trump has repeatedly branded Cruz as “lyin’ Ted.” Cruz’s campaign slogan is “TrusTed.”
Cruz hit on the “lyin’ Trump” theme again on Friday, telling rally-goers in Williamsport, Pennsylvania that Trump is “trying to fool gullible voters,” according to reporter Betsy Klein. He repeated the statement that Trump is “telling us he’s lying to us.”
During the Levin interview, Cruz brought up words from Trump supporter Ben Carson and reports of Trump’s off the record meeting with the New York Times, calling it all “an act, a show.” Cruz accused Trump of telling the NYT that “he’s not going to build a wall, he’s not going to deport the people here illegally.”
Trump supporter and former presidential candidate himself, Ben Carson, told the RNC members in Florida that Trump is “trying to moderate. He’s getting better,” reported the AP.
Cruz told Levin and his listeners, “If you’re tired of being lied to you oughta at least listen to it when Donald Trump tells us he’s lying to us and that’s why I think the right thing for a voter to do is not listen to campaign rhetoric, but instead look for a record. You want someone who’ll stand up to immigration? Ask who led the fight against the Gang of 8 amnesty plan and led the effort to defeat it in congress. I was leading that effort against amnesty when Donald Trump was funding the Gang of 8 amnesty plan.”
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