Donald Trump will be standing on a stage in Des Moines tonight, but it won’t be at the Fox News debate alongside the other leading Republican presidential candidates.
Trump’s feud with Fox News and his decision to boycott the debate has been fodder for his rivals, like Texas Senator Ted Cruz.
“Apparently Mr. Trump considers Megyn Kelly very, very scary,” Cruz said during a campaign rally this week.
At an earlier Fox News debate, Kelly asked Trump about controversial statements he’s made about women over the years. Trump had been asking that Kelly be removed from the panel of moderators at tonight’s debate.
“You know Donald is a fragile soul. I mean she might ask a mean question and who knows what could happen,” Cruz said, as the crowd laughed. “I mean, his hair could stand on end.”
Cruz said “actions speak louder than words” and Trump “doesn’t want to defend his record” in front of the people of Iowa.
“It is an amazing statement for a presidential candidate to say: ‘I’m not showing up for the debate.’ This entire process is a job interview,” Cruz says. “…What does it say when Donald tells the men and women of Iowa: ‘My time is more important than your time,’?”
Cruz said after seven years of a “self-involved” President Obama, it’s time to choose someone who doesn’t behave like an emperor. Trump has planned a fundraiser for veterans and the “Wounded Warriors” organization tonight in Des Moines. Trump will take the stage at eight o’clock — the same time the Fox News debate is scheduled to start.
Other candidates are ridiculing Trump for skipping the debate, too. New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is accusing Trump of acting like a 13-year-old who doesn’t get his way. Florida Senator Marco Rubio is denounced the “theatrics” of both Trump and Cruz. Cruz at one point challenged Trump to a one-on-one debate in Iowa this weekend. Rubio says that’s all an “entertaining sideshow” to the campaign to find a Republican who can defeat Hillary Clinton.