Published on Oct 25, 2015
Donald Trump said Sunday that he didn't say "anything bad" about rival Ben Carson being a Seventh-day Adventist and saw no reason to apologize for raising the issue during a recent campaign rally. "I would certainly give an apology if I said something bad about it. But I didn't. All I said was I don't know about it," Trump said during an interview on ABC's "This Week," one of three Sunday talk shows in which the billionaire businessman talked about recent polls that showed Carson pulling ahead of him in Iowa. Trump dismissed a suggestion by host George Stephanopolous that by mentioning Caron's religious affiliation he was trying to "send a dog whistle" to "some conservatives [who] claim the Seventh Day Adventists are not Christian. "No, not at all," Trump said. Carson, in an interview on Fox News, noted that Trump "went ballistic" several weeks ago when Carson questioned Trump's faith. "So it seems a little interesting that he would now be doing that," Carson noted. In dueling appearances on the Sunday shows by the two top candidates for the Republican presidential nomination, Trump kept up his aggressive rhetoric about his political prowess and Carson continued his confident but low-key approach to the campaign. Trump suggested in interviews on Sunday that he was a bit taken aback by polls that show Carson, whom he has criticized as lacking energy, pulling ahead of him in Iowa. "I was really surprised to see it, because three nights ago, I was in Iowa. We had a packed house. We had 4,000 people, and it was a lovefest," Trump said in an interview on CNN's "State of the Union." "And I have done really well with the evangelicals and with the tea party and everything. And I just don't understand the number. But you know what? I accept the number. It means I have to work a little bit harder in Iowa." Carson, in an interview on Fox News, attributed his surge in Iowa to "the power of social media and of word of mouth because as you know ... a lot of the media has it in for me. But, you know, if people listen to them, you know, I would be polling at less than zero." And he declined to get strike back at Trump, who said during a rally in Florida on Saturday, "I'm Presbyterian. Boy, that's down the middle of the road, folks, in all fairness. I mean, Seventh-day Adventist, I don't know about. I just don't know about."
[Ben Carson: I don't want to get into a 'gladiator fight' with Donald Trump]
Carson passed when Fox News anchor Chris Wallace reminded him of that comment, as well as Trump's criticisms about his rival's energy level and his stand on immigration.
"I really refuse to really get into the mud pit," Carson said, adding that Trump "is who he is. I don't think that's going to change. And I am who I am. That's not going to change, either."
He continued: "And the way I kind of look at it, if people resonate what I'm talking about ... And if they like that, and it works with them, and they feel I'm the good representative for them, that's great. I would love to have their vote. And if they don't want me, that's fine, too. Because I would never lie just to get an office. I wouldn't be happy, and the people wouldn't be happy."
Last month Carson drew Trump's ire when he explained that the difference between him and the former reality TV show star was that “I’ve realized where my success has come from, and I don’t in any way deny my faith in God.” He later apologized, saying, "If he took that as a personal attack on him, I apologize, it was certainly not the intent." Carson also drew criticism last month when he said he would not support a Muslim for president.Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump comes to “This Week.” where george stephanopoulos grilled trump on taking jabs at ben carson's religion and ben carson creeping up in the polls. donald trump then turns his attention to his favorite target jeb bush. trump talks about bush cutting campaign staffers salaries by 40% and how hes number one and spent the least