Donald Trump Tuesday morning denied reports that he fired Corey Lewandowski as his campaign manager because of the demands of his family members — especially daughter Ivanka Trump — insisting that the reports were "all nonsense" and that Lewandowski was released because the campaign is "going in a different direction."
"Ivanka has great respect for him and so does my family," the presumptive GOP nominee told NBC's "Today"
show. "She likes Corey. And I read all these reports about the children, and about
all of this. It's all nonsense."
Lewandowski, said Trump, "did a good job. I spent much less than everybody else and I beat everybody else."
And, he continued, he ran his primary campaign "very lean, spent very little money," but still won in landslides and "Corey was perfect for that . . . you saw his interviews yesterday. We have a great relationship, but we're going in a different direction."
Trump, though, said he does not plan to change his tone for the general election, even without Lewandowski, whose game plan was to "let Trump be Trump."
"I think I have to be who I am," he told "Today" show anchor Matt Lauer. "I don't want to be a phony like Hillary Clinton where she reads stuff written up by high-priced talent. I don't want to be that. I want to be what I am."
He pointed out that new polls have come out and even with the "horrible few weeks I had from the press, the press is treating me unbelievably terribly," his poll numbers are "right there."
Meanwhile, the Securities Exchange Commission is showing Trump with $1.3 million on hand, compared to $42 million in Hillary Clinton's war chest, but Trump downplayed those reports.
"I understand money better than anybody," said Trump. "I understand it far better than Hillary and I'm way up on the economy when it comes to questions about the economy . . . I raised a lot of money.
"You also have to have some help from the party. But I raised a lot of money — $12 million this weekend. I was in Texas, I was in Arizona, I was in Las Vegas. We raised a lot of money this weekend."
He continued that he spent $55 million of his own money to win the primaries, "a lot of money by even any standard," and he may do that again in the general election. "I have a lot of cash and I may do it again in the general election. It would be nice to have some help from the party."
Sandy Fitzgerald has more than three decades in journalism and serves as a general assignment writer for Newsmax covering news, media, and politics.
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