Donald Trump remains the frontrunner for the Republican presidential nomination following a controversial debate in which the billionaire businessman refused to pledge loyalty to the eventual GOP nominee.
During the first major GOP debate for the 2016 presidential elections which was held on Thursday, Trump had a fiery exchange with Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly.
Kelly asked Trump to respond to disparaging remarks he had made in the past about women, calling them “fat pigs,” “dogs,” and “slobs.” Trump tried to wave off the question and dismissed Kelly.
Trump stirred more controversy Friday when he said on CNN that Kelly “had blood coming out of her eyes, blood coming out of her wherever” during the debate.
Republican leaders were quick to criticize Trump for his “demeaning” statements, with some even suggesting that his repeated attacks on Kelly, a popular conservative figure, might have ruined his candidacy.
Trump appeared on multiple political television talk shows Sunday, insisting he “cherishes” women and refusing to apologize for his remarks on Kelly.
However, an NBC News online poll shows that Trump is still at the top of the list of the crowded GOP field, with 23 percent support among likely Republican voters.
Trump’s closest competitor, Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, has 13 percent of the primary votes, according to the survey.
The real estate magnate has been sustaining his lead among influential Republicans such as former Florida governor Jeb Bush and Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker much to the surprise of political analysts and the dismay of established Republican leaders.
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