Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump on Monday released his first television commercial in the 2016 race for the White House with a 30-second spot highlighting his stance on Muslims, immigration and terrorism.
The ad will air starting on Tuesday in Iowa and New Hampshire, two key early voting states in the run-up to the party's nomination convention in July ahead of the November election, Trump's campaign said in a statement on its website.
The commercial reiterates the Republican front-runner's recent call to temporarily block Muslims from entering the United States and pledges a tough stance against Islamic State and acts of terrorism.
"He'll quickly cut the head off ISIS and take their oil," the ad said, using an acronym for the militant group. The ad also reiterated the businessman-turned-politician's ongoing calls to target illegal immigration by building a wall along the southern U.S. border that he said Mexico will pay for.
The 432nd (or thereabouts) Republican debate took place overnight, and the highlight seems to have been a spat between Donald Trump and his closest rival Ted Cruz over the latter’s birthplace. You might have thought that Trump would be reluctant to pick fights on such matters, given his failed attempt to suggest Barack Obama isn’t American, but these are strange times.
Meanwhile, Trump has yet again astonished the world. This time by enlisting young cheerleaders called Freedom Girls for a bizarre official song which might not look out of place in North Korea. The ‘Donald Trump Jam’ was performed for the first time at a rally in Pensacola, Florida on Wednesday.
Its lyrics include: "When freedom rings, answer the call! On your feet, stand up tall! Freedom's on our shoulders, USA! Enemies of freedom face the music, C'mon boys, take them down. President Donald Trump knows how to make America great: Deal from strength or get crushed every time."
Sarah Palin, the former Alaska governor and 2008 Vice Presidential candidate, is endorsing Donald Trump as the Republican White House nominee, US media report. "I'm proud to endorse Donald J. Trump for president," Mrs Palin said in a statement provided by Mr Trump's campaign, according to the New York Times.
The real estate billionaire said in a statement that he was "greatly honored by Sarah's endorsement. "She is a friend, and a high-quality person whom I have great respect for. I am proud to have her support."
She is tipped to announce her endorsement in person on stage alongside Mr Trump at a rally in Ames, Iowa, on Tuesday afternoon. Mrs Palin's seal of approval comes at a pivotal moment as the countdown begins to the first-in-the-nation presidential primary, on 1 February, in the Hawkeye state. Her endorsement is a possible blow to one of Mr Trump's closest rivals, Texas Senator Ted Cruz, who is also trying to appeal to disaffected anti-establishment voters.
Just hours after winning New Hampshire's Republican primary with 35 percent of the vote, front-runner Donald Trump weighed in on the current state of the GOP field in an interview with "CBS This Morning" early Wednesday.
"The people of New Hampshire were amazing," Trump said, adding that "I thought I'd do well there." He weighed in on other Republican rivals, including former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush as a candidate who "just doesn't have it" and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie who he called a "friend."
"[Christie] did call me," Trump said. "He just congratulated me and said, 'It was just unbelievable what you've done, I mean, the numbers were fantastic.'" "He's a friend of mine," Trump added. "I thought he was very effective. And I was surprised he didn't do better, frankly."
Immediately after Saturday night's Republican debate, CBS News interviewed a nationally representative sample of debate watchers assembled by GfK's Knowledge Panel who identified themselves as Republicans or independents.
Thirty-two percent of these debate watchers say Marco Rubio won the debate, beating out Donald Trump (24 percent) and John Kasich (19 percent), who are ranked second and third, respectively. Further down on the list are Ted Cruz (12 percent), Ben Carson (8 percent), and Jeb Bush (5 percent).
Marco Rubio is the clear favorite among Republicans, while independents are largely divided between Trump, Kasich, and Rubio. Donald Trump has been leading national polls for months, and he is seen by Republican and independent debate watchers as the most likely -- with 42 percent -- of the six candidates to win in November should he get the nomination. But Marco Rubio comes in second (22 percent), beating out Ted Cruz (14 percent) by eight points.
Donald Trump is the clear leader on values. Twenty-seven percent of Republicans and independents who watched the debate pick Trump as the candidate who most shares their values, with Ben Carson and Marco Rubio tied for second place, each with 16 percent. Rubio does better than Kasich among Republicans, while Kasich does better than Rubio among independents.
But when it comes to the candidate who is best prepared to be President, Republicans and independent debate watchers choose John Kasich first (22 percent), just edging out Donald Trump (20 percent) by two points. Still, Donald Trump enjoys a strong leading position on all the issues measured in this poll: the economy, immigration, terrorism, and bringing needed change. Rubio comes in second - ahead of Cruz - on immigration. Kasich comes in second on the economy and jobs.