Donald Trump accuses Ted Cruz of voter fraud, demands ‘new election’ in Iowa

Two days after finishing second to Ted Cruz in the Iowa caucuses, Donald Trump is accusing the Texas senator of fraud and demanding that either a “new election” take place in the Hawkeye State or that its results be “nullified.”

“Ted Cruz didn’t win Iowa, he stole it,” Trump tweeted on Wednesday. “That is why all of the polls were so wrong and why he got far more votes than anticipated. Bad!”

Trump accused the Cruz campaign of misleading caucus-goers by circulating a false election-night rumor implying that retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson was planning to drop out of the race.

The Cruz campaign issued an apology to Carson on Tuesday, saying it should have clarified that Carson was, in fact, continuing his bid for the Republican nomination.

Trump also made mention of a deceptive mailer distributed by the Cruz campaign designed to shame Iowa voters into caucusing.

“Based on the fraud committed by Senator Ted Cruz during the Iowa Caucus, either a new election should take place or Cruz results nullified,” Trump tweeted.

“Reality has hit the reality star,” Cruz campaign spokesman Rick Tyler responded in a statement. “Since Iowa, no one is talking about Donald Trump. That’s why he’s popping off on Twitter. There are Twitter addiction therapy groups, and he should check in with his local chapter.”

The accusations stand in stark contrast to Trump’s concession speech, in which the brash billionaire struck a conciliatory tone.

“We finished second, and I want to tell you something,” he said late Monday in Des Moines. “I’m just honored. I’m really honored. And I want to congratulate Ted, and I want to congratulate all of the incredible candidates.”

On NBC’s “Today” show Wednesday, Trump said he was “semi-satisfied” with his second-place finish.

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“I came in second, and nobody said it was a victory. It’s kind of strange,” he said. “I beat a lot of senators, a lot of governors. They do it professionally. I’ve never done this before. I’m not a professional politician, and I came in second. It was such a big story that I came in second. I don’t know why. I was actually semi-satisfied with it.”

Before a rally in New Hampshire on Tuesday, Trump admitted his decision to boycott Fox News’ GOP debate may have cost him in the caucuses.

“I think some people were disappointed that I didn’t go into the debate,” he told reporters.


Trump and Cruz appear together at a rally protesting the Iran nuclear deal in September. (Photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP)