Trump Refuses to Rule Out Third-Party Run in GOP Debate

Posted at 12:02 AM, Aug 07, 2015
and last updated 2015-08-07 00:02:00-04

CLEVELAND (AP) - Donald Trump has used the GOP presidential debate to warn that he might run as an independent if denied the GOP nomination.

That was the response to the very first question of the night at the Fox News Channel presidential debate before a live audience in Cleveland. Trump also refused to pledge "at this time" that he would support the party's eventual nominee.

He also refused to apologize for making crude comments about women, defended his changing policy positions and repeatedly tangled with the debate moderators. He said he's not concerned about political correctness.

Some of the other nine candidates also tangled with him and each other. They quarreled over government surveillance, immigration, terrorism and gay marriage. Each attempted to present themselves as the strongest to take on Democratic front-runner Hillary Rodham Clinton.

A raucous crowd cheered the candidates on throughout the debate in Cleveland. Earlier, the remaining seven candidates were relegated to a pre-debate forum. The low-key event happened in a largely empty arena.

Meanwhile, Clinton said in Los Angeles she's often left in a "state of disbelief" by what she hears from some of her 2016 rivals.

(Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)