Trump defends himself amid criticism
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Trump opened up an interview Thursday night by continuing to claim a recent remark about GOP rival Carly Fiorina's was not a slam on her appearance.
"No, I'm talking about persona," Trump reiterated on Fox News's "Greta," repeating a claim he stressed in several other interviews earlier in the day. 
"Some comments are made as an entertainer," Trump said. "What can I say? I'm leading with the evangelicals, I'm leading with women."
"This is a woman who gets tremendous publicity, mostly on Fox," Trump said of Fiorina. "Her past doesn't go along with the publicity she's getting."
Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, a GOP presidential rival, said it was "deeply troubling" for Trump to mock Fiorina's "face," as quoted in a Rolling Stone magazine article released this week.
Democratic presidential candidate Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonTrump touts economic agenda in battleground Ohio The Memo: Campaigns gird for rush of early voting Trump's pitch to Maine lobstermen falls flat MORE weighed into the issue, too, suggesting Trump "just seems to delight in insulting women every chance he gets" and saying she would like to debate him should he get the GOP nomination. 
"I probably could think of nobody who I would rather debate," Trump responded on Fox. "I think beating her in a debate would be one of the easier challenges in my life."
Trump has dominated the GOP field in polls for weeks, and he saw his support rise to 32 percent in a CNN/ORC poll released early Thursday. 
Trump called Carson an "okay doctor" and ripped him for questioning Trump’s religious beliefs this week. Carson effectively called for a ceasefire earlier Thursday.
"I'm sure that he's a good doctor," Trump said on Fox on Thursday night, after having his assessment of the former star neurosurgeon challenged by host Greta Van Susteren. 
"He's overrated as a doctor," Trump said, "but we'll see." 
He added that Carson questioning his faith was "nasty."