Former Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.) says in a new interview that Donald TrumpDonald TrumpTrump takes shot at new GOP candidate in Ohio over Cleveland nickname GOP political operatives indicted over illegal campaign contribution from Russian national in 2016 On The Money — Dems dare GOP to vote for shutdown, default MORE can win the general election, but he's going to need to alter his style somewhat to do so.
“He has gotten himself to the edge of the mountain. He can get himself to the top of the mountain, but to do that he has to be willing to make real change,” Gingrich, a Trump supporter, told The New York Times.
Gingrich cited the recent controversy over Trump's comments about former Miss Universe Alicia Machado's weight.
Trump, the Republican presidential nominee, fueled criticism last week after Democratic nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonGOP political operatives indicted over illegal campaign contribution from Russian national in 2016 Clinton lawyer's indictment reveals 'bag of tricks' Attorney charged in Durham investigation pleads not guilty MORE brought up his past comments at last Monday's presidential debate.
Trump escalated the controversy on Friday when, in a series of tweets, he called Machado "disgusting" and cited a sex tape — an allegation Machado has called "slander and cheap lies."
“He has to decide that the presidency is worth drilling into,” Gingrich told the Times.
“With the possible exception of Eisenhower, nobody in modern times has become president without making” major changes to their approach, he said.
“I really want him to understand that he can win this,” Gingrich said. “He is the one person who can beat him — not Hillary.”