Trump says he’s bigger than Reagan

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump told Bloomberg’s “With All Due Respect” that he’s building a movement bigger than that of former President Ronald Reagan. “I think that the closest thing I can think of is Reagan, but I don’t think it’s the intensity that we have,” the billionaire said. “Now, Reagan had a little bit of this, but I don’t think to the same extent — but he also won.”

Trump sought to emphasize that those who turned out to see him speak weren’t simply there for entertainment value. “These people are committed,” he said.

 

Carson’s finance chairman resigns

Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson’s campaign was shaken Thursday by yet another high-profile resignation, with finance chairman Dean Parker leaving amid intense scrutiny over his grip on the campaign’s expensive fundraising operation and the perception that he has benefited improperly from campaign spending.

From chartered flights to investments in ineffective paper mailers in early voting states, decisions made by staff have raised questions in recent months about whether the campaign is spending its money wisely. Those questions are important to Carson’s grass-roots donor base; about 60 percent of Carson’s enormous fundraising total during the last fundraising quarter came from small-dollar donors who gave less than $200 each. Parker has overseen donations of $43 million between July 1 and Dec. 31, 2015. But during the third fundraising quarter between July and October the campaign sank as much as 50 percent back into fundraising, raising many eyebrows about the campaign’s gargantuan “burn rate.”

 

Third-party debater is argued

The co-chairs of the Commission on Presidential Debates told “The Open Mind” public television series that they are giving serious thought to the inclusion of a third-party candidate — something that hasn’t happened since 1992, when Ross Perot joined Republican President George H.W. Bush and Democratic nominee Bill Clinton onstage.

“The dynamic in the electorate right now and the dissatisfaction with the two major political parties could very conceivably allow an independent or a third-party candidate to emerge, and we are very clear that they would be welcome in these debates,” commission co-chair Michael McCurry told “Open Mind” host Alexander Heffner in an interview to air Jan. 24.

Associated Press