In light of GOP frontrunner Donald Trump refusing to participate in the upcoming debate in Iowa on Thursday night, Ted Cruz has challenged Trump to a one-on-one debate “anytime between now and the Iowa caucus.”
Less than an hour after Trump’s campaign announced that the front-runner would be skipping Thursday’s debate, Cruz, hoping to challenge Trump into a one-on-one, said to a crowd in Fairfield, Iowa, that “Donald is a fragile soul” and is “scared to face Megyn Kelly.”
“We’ll do 90 minutes, Lincoln-Douglas, mano-a-mano, Donald and me,” Cruz said. “He can lay out his vision for this country, and I can lay out my vision for this country in front of the men and women of Iowa.”
NBC News reported that Cruz, who has shied away from non-issue attacks on Trump, suggested Trump’s “hair might stand on end” if Kelly “asked him mean questions.”
The Texas senator also questioned why Trump would be “afraid” to debate him head-to-head.
“He’s been saying this past week he thinks I’m stupid,” Cruz slyly said on conservative Mark Levin’s radio program also on Tuesday night. “He should do very well with someone who is so stupid — away from moderators he’s so afraid of.”
Cruz furthered his attack on Trump’s decision to bow out of the debate, asking Levin how Trump would handle friction with other world leaders.
“I promise you Putin is a lot scarier than Megyn Kelly,” Cruz said. “I’d like to hear Donald explain to the American people and to the people of Iowa how he is prepared to be commander-in-chief if he’s terrified by a television host.”
Trump has just recently faced increased scrutiny by the other candidates over his past positions, which used to skew quite liberal.
The Cruz campaign also released a TV ad on Monday beginning to hit Trump for the view changes.