Republican presidential hopeful Donald Trump has promised to change his image, in a closed-door meeting with GOP leaders.
Donald Trump, who leads the Republican race to be presidential nominee, delivered his message via aides, the Associated Press news agency reports.
The New York businessman’s success in primary elections so far has set off alarm bells among those in the party anxious that his tone and policies will turn off voters.
Five states go to the polls on April 26 to pick their presidential candidates.
Donald Trump has a clear lead in the number of delegates but may fall short of the 1,237 threshold required to win the nomination without a contested convention – where the nominee is chosen through negotiations among party figures.
In a recording of April 21 meeting obtained by Associated Press, Donald Trump’s senior aides told Republican leaders that he has been “projecting an image” so far and “the part that he’s been playing is now evolving”.
In it, Donald Trump’s newly hired senior aide, Paul Manafort, told the Republican National Committee (RNC) members that the presidential hopeful has a campaigning personality and a private one.
“When he’s out on the stage, when he’s talking about the kinds of things he’s talking about on the stump, he’s projecting an image that’s for that purpose,” Paul Manafort said.
Donald Trump knows he needs to moderate his personality, Paul Manafort told the meeting. “The negatives [unfavorable ratings in polls] will come down. The image is going to change.”
His standing among female voters is particularly low, after a series of controversial remarks about women, abortion and rival Ted Cruz’s wife.
According to analysts, Donald Trump’s decisive win in the New York primary this week seemed to signal a new, softer side in his victory speech.
Meanwhile, he told a rally in Pennsylvania on April 21: “At some point, I’m going to be so presidential that you people will be so bored.”
On one of the key social issues currently engulfing the GOP, transgender rights, Donald Trump took a stance out of step with his key rival Ted Cruz on April 21, when he said transgender people should be allowed to use a toilet assigned to a gender of their choosing.
Ted Cruz criticized this as politically correct but former candidate Ben Carson praised Donald Trump for “trying to moderate”.
Donald Trump has accused the RNC of conspiring against him and of rigging the way delegates are awarded in a way that is unfavorable to him.
Donald Trump has accused GOP’s leaders of conspiracy, saying they do not want him to win the presidential nomination.
The system was “stacked” against him, the Republican frontrunner said in New York, accusing the Republican National Committee (RNC) of conspiring against him.
Donald Trump’s comments come after his rival Ted Cruz was awarded all the delegates in Colorado without a state-wide vote.
He leads the race but may fall short of getting enough delegates to get the nomination outright.
That would lead to a contested convention in July, where delegates are free after the first ballot to back whom they want, opening the door for Texas Senator Ted Cruz or even the third candidate in the race, John Kasich.
The Washington Post reported on April 13 that Ted Cruz is likely to win on a second vote, because he has persuaded so many delegates to vote for him when they are “unbound” to vote as pledged.
However, Republican National Committee chairman Reince Priebus rejected Donald Trump’s charge that the rules in states like Colorado had been changed in response to his rise in the polls.
Reince Priebus tweeted that the nomination process had been well known for more than a year.
“It’s the responsibility of the campaigns to understand it. Complaints now? Give us all a break.”
Asked at a town hall event in New York whether the RNC wanted him to win, Donald Trump said: “No, I don’t think so. I really don’t.”
He has been criticized for not campaigning hard enough on the ground in states like Colorado.
However, Donald Trump said delegates who wanted to support him were being pushed out by the RNC.
“They don’t like when I put up my own money because it means they don’t have any control of me because I’m working for the people,” he said.
Most states have opted to hold state-wide primaries or caucuses to determine the number of delegates pledged to a particular candidate.
However, Colorado decided last summer to select its delegates in a different way, at its own state convention.
The state-by-state primary contests come to New York next week where a high number of delegates will be up for grabs.
Several senior Republicans have expressed opposition to Donald Trump winning, doubting his ability to win a general election and disagreeing with his hard line on immigration.
The property tycoon has broken an earlier pledge he made to support whoever the Republicans nominate, therefore refusing to rule out a third-party run.
Donald Trump has said there will be “riots” if he is not chosen as the party’s nominee, having headed to the convention with the most delegates.
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