Donald Trump would make Washington "worse, not better" — and the Club for Growth is "telling the voters in Iowa about his record" through its million-dollar advertising campaign, the group's president, David McIntosh, told Newsmax TV
"He's the classic politician, where he's pretending to be something he's not," McIntosh told "Newsmax Prime" host J.D. Hayworth of the GOP frontrunner. "He says he's a conservative, but has all of these liberal positions."
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"Now, I know a lot of people are mad at Washington and the failure of Republican leadership to really change things this time, as we are too, but Trump would make it worse, not better."
But former New York Lt. Gov. Betsy McCaughey countered that Trump's presence in the campaign has caused more Americans to pay attention to the Republican Party's message.
"I'm concerned that the club is worried about keeping Trump out of the club rather than promoting growth," she said. "The fact is that Trump's presence in this race has set the nation on fire."
McCaughey cited the 24 million people who watched the first debate last month — and the 23 million who saw No. 2 last week.
"That means more Americans are hearing the Republican message," she told Hayworth. "We need growth and to have growth, 4 percent growth, we need to elect a Republican president."
"I don't want to stand in the way of what Donald Trump is doing. So far, his participation in this race has been a net positive for the GOP — and that means positive for growth."
"Most Republicans understand that thus far in the race, Trump has been making a very positive contribution to broadening the appeal of the Republican Party, not narrowing it," McCaughey added. "Many more people are interested in the Republican race at this point than ever before."
"I know that Donald Trump is controversial, but the fact is he's doing the GOP such a favor, they should be on their knees thanking him."
McIntosh remained confident that the organization could beat back a lawsuit that Trump has threatened to file over the ads.
"He is a tax-raiser, and his own words show it," he said. "We're not worried at all about the lawsuit."
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