By Keith Laing
Republican presidential front-runner Donald TrumpDonald TrumpGiuliani whacks Kaine for missing 9/11 veto vote Clinton, Sanders join forces for debt-free college roundtable Trump transition team plans meeting with tech groups MORE on Sunday defended his comments about being able to shoot someone and retain support from GOP voters.
Asked during an appearance on CBS's "Face The Nation" about his declaration that "I could stand in the middle of 5th Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn't lose voters," Trump said the comments were intended to demonstrate the durability of his polling advantage ahead of early voting in states like Iowa and New Hampshire.
"Well, I have a very great group of people ... I have people that are so loyal and it's been so reported and even in your poll, but in a lot of the polls they do that, the loyalty factor," he said.
"And my factor’s up. When you add it all up, it's pretty much close to 90 percent," Trump continued. "These are people that just won't leave, they will not leave. I love my people. And it's a great thing. I mean, it's a great thing. Far greater loyalty than any other candidate by double, triple, quadruple, and I love my people."
Trump has been criticized for invoking violent imagery in the context of a presidential campaign.
He said he is not worried about criticism from conservative publications like the National Review, which recently dedicated an issue to critiques of Trump's presidential campaign.
"Well, it's a failing magazine, number one, they need publicity," he said.
"These are people for the most part I don't know, I don't even know who most of them are, I don't want to know who most of them are," Trump continued. "And they're just people that are I guess trying to save a magazine that's close to closing up. And you know, they're going to get publicity, and I actually think it plays into what I'm saying because it shows the divisiveness."
Trump said the National Review does not have a good track record of picking winners of GOP presidential primaries.
"You know, they backed Romney, he lost. They backed McCain, he lost. They lose, and they don't know how to win," he said. "And I'm not sure they even want to win, they just want to stay relevant. And they're very irrelevant."
Trump also said that he would "love" to run against former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who is rumored to be considering mounting an independent presidential bid.
"I know Michael very well. I'd love to compete against Michael. And I know him very well," he said. "And I think he might very well get in the race, and I would love to have him get in the race.
"He's very opposite on me with guns and he's opposite on pro-life and he's opposite on a lot of things, so I would love to have Michael get in the race," Trump continued. "But I don't know if he's going to do it, but I hope he does, I would love to compete against Michael."