- The Washington Times - Wednesday, February 3, 2016

NASHUA, N.H. — Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas on Wednesday poked fun at businessman Donald Trump’s decision to skip the last GOP presidential debate.

Speaking here at a campaign stop, Mr. Cruz found himself standing next to a unfilled seat on stage and harkened back to the 2012 Republican National Convention when Hollywood actor Clint Eastwood improvised during his address by talking to an empty chair as if President Obama was there.

“Standing next to this chair like Clint, I kind of feel like the debate I had with Donald Trump,” Mr. Cruz said.

Mr. Cruz has started to sharpen his counter punches against Mr. Trump, who accused Mr. Cruz on Wednesday of stealing the Iowa caucuses this week.

The Texas Republican dismissed the charge as Mr. Trump’s latest attempt to muddy up the conversation.

“Have you noticed that Donald doesn’t take losing well?” Mr. Cruz said. “I don’t think people are interested in a temper tantrum, or you can call it a ‘Trumper tantrum.’ “

“He doesn’t want to debate the substance and the record,” he said.

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