Donald Trump unleashes tweetstorm attack on Ted Cruz, says he 'stole' the Iowa caucuses

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Trump Sets Sights on New Hampshire, and Refocuses on Ted Cruz

Donald Trump has accused Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) of "illegally" stealing his Monday-night Iowa caucus victory and suggested that Cruz's vote total should be "nullified."

Cruz won the Republican Iowa caucuses on Monday in something of an upset over Trump, who had been leading polls for weeks before the voting started.

In the first in a string of attacks against Cruz, Trump tweeted Wednesday: "Ted Cruz didn't win Iowa, he stole it. That is why all of the polls were so wrong and why he got far more votes than anticipated. Bad!"

An earlier version of Trump's tweet had said Cruz "illegally stole" the caucus win.

Laying out a series of Cruz actions that he suggested were "fraud," Trump later summarized in a tweet: "Based on the fraud committed by Senator Ted Cruz during the Iowa Caucus, either a new election should take place or Cruz results nullified."

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Donald Trump unleashes tweetstorm attack on Ted Cruz, says he 'stole' the Iowa caucuses
Real estate developer Donald Trump annouces intentions to build a $100 million dollar Regency Hotel. (Photo by John Pedin/NY Daily News via Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - MARCH 02: Donald Trump with Alfred Eisenpreis, New York City Economic Development Administrator. Sketch of new 1,400 room Renovation project of Commodore Hotel. (Photo by NY Daily News Archive via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - 1980: Donald Trump and Ivana Trump attend Roy Cohn's birthday party in February 1980 in New York City. (Photo by Sonia Moskowitz/Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - MAY 26: Donald Trump stands behind architect's model of City Hall Plaza. (Photo by Frank Russo/NY Daily News Archive via Getty Images)
Donna Mills and Donald Trump during 1983 Annual American Image Awards at Sheraton Center in New York City, New York, United States. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage)
Portrait of real estate mogul Donald John Trump (b.1946), smiling slightly and facing to his right, 1983. New York. (Photo by Bachrach/Getty Images)
New York real estate magnates Steve Ross, right, and Donald Trump, left, announce agreement, Thursday, August 1, 1985 in New York, to merge the Houston Gamblers and the New Jersey Generals United States Football League teams. Ross heads a group of investors that last week agreed to buy the troubled Houston franchise. (AP Photo/Marty Lederhandler)
Real estate magnate Donald Trump poses in front of one of three Sikorsky helicopters at New York Port Authority's West 30 Street Heliport on March 22, 1988. (AP Photo/Wilbur Funches)
Ivana Trump and Donald Trump during Mike Tyson vs Michael Spinks Fight at Trump Plaza - June 27, 1988 at Trump Plaza in Atlantic City, New Jersey, United States. (Photo by Ron Galella/WireImage)
Donald Trump and his wife, Ivana, pose outside the Federal Courthouse after she was sworn in as a United States citizen, May 1988. (AP Photo)
NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 4: Billionaire Donald Trump and his wife Ivana arrive 04 December 1989 at a social engagement in New York. (Photo credit should read SWERZEY/AFP/Getty Images)
Shown in photo is Donald Trump, Nov. 20, 1990. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)
Billionaire developer Donald Trump, right, waits with his brother Robert for the start of a Casino Control Commission meeting in Atlantic City, N.J., March 29, 1990. Trump was seeking final approval for the Taj Mahal Casino Resort, one of the world's largest casino complexes. (AP Photo)
Developer Donald Trump, center, is flanked by super middleweight champion Thomas Hearns, left, of Detroit, and Michael Olajide of Canada at a news conference in New York Thursday, Feb. 15, 1990. The three announced the super middleweight title bout at Trump Taj Mahal Casino Resort at Atlantic city, N. J on April 28.(AP Photo/Timothy Clary)
Real estate magnate Donald Trump and his girlfriend Marla Maples are seen at the Holyfield-Foreman fight at Trump Plaza in Atlantic City, N.J., April 19, 1991. (AP Photo)
Donald Trump and Daughter Ivanka Trump during Maybelline Presents 1991 Look of the Year at Plaza Hotel in New York City, New York, United States. (Photo by Ron Galella/WireImage)
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 7: Donald Trump touches 07 April 1993 Marla Maples stomach to confirm published reports that the actress is pregnant with his child. The two arrived for Maples appearance in the Broadway musical 'The Will Rogers Follies'. (Photo credit should read HAI DO/AFP/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 21: US business tycoon Donald Trump(C) enters the PLaza Hotel in New York past supporters 21 December 1994. Hundreds of supporters showed up at a news conference where Trump denied a New York newspaper report that the Sultan of Brunei had bid 300 million USD to buy the Manhattan hotel. (Photo credit should read DON EMMERT/AFP/Getty Images)
FILE--This is a 1994 file photo of Donald Trump. Trump said Wednesday, Oct. 23, 1996 he has bought the Miss Universe, Miss USA and Miss Teen beauty pageants from ITT. ``It's a done deal,'' Trump said in a telephone interview. ``It's a very, very great entertainment format. It gets very high ratings, it's doing very well and we'll make it even better.'' Trump declined to say how much he paid. Asked if a New York Post source was correct in saying the deal was worth tens of millions of dollars, Trump replied, ``Why not? (AP Photo/Jim Cooper)
FLUSHING MEADOWS, UNITED STATES: Donald Trump and his girlfriend Celina Midelfar watch Conchita Martinez and Amanda Coetzer 07 September at US Open in Flushing Meadows, NY. AFP PHOTO Timothy CLARY (Photo credit should read TIMOTHY CLARY/AFP/Getty Images)
Donald Trump and Christine Whitman during Opening of New Warner Bros. Store in Trump Plaza Casino at Trump Plaza Casino in Atlantic City, New Jersey, United States. (Photo by Ron Galella/WireImage)
In this June 7, 1995 file photograph, Donald Trump is seen above the floor of the New York Stock Exchange after taking his flagship Trump Plaza Casino public in New York City. Trump Entertainment Resorts Inc., based in Atlantic City, New Jersey, filed for Chapter 11 protection on Tuesday, Feb. 17, 2009, in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in New Jersey. Trump and his daughter Ivanka resigned from the company's board Friday, Feb. 13, 2009, after growing frustrated with bondholders. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens,File)
Celine Dion, husband Rene, Donald Trump & Ivanka Trump (Photo by KMazur/WireImage)
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Entrepreneur Donald Trump (L) and Rev. Al Sharpton speak at a ribbon cutting ceremony for Sharpton's National Action Network Convention April 5, 2002 in New York City. The group aims to further the development of civil rights. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)
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US tycoon Donald Trump arrives to speak at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) at National Harbor, Maryland, outside Washington, on February 27, 2015. AFP PHOTO/NICHOLAS KAMM (Photo credit should read NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty Images)
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AYR, SCOTLAND - JULY 30: Republican Presidential Candidate Donald Trump visits his Scottish golf course Turnberry with his children Ivanka Trump and Eric Trump on July 30, 2015 in Ayr, Scotland. Donald Trump answered questions from the media at a press conference. (Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)
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In other tweets, Trump explained that he was referring to a controversy for which Cruz apologized to retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson on Tuesday.

Carson's campaign accused Cruz of playing "dirty tricks" on the night of the caucuses.

At the time, Carson reportedly signaled that he was speaking early Monday and flying home to Florida, which caused some Cruz supporters to publicly speculate that Carson was withdrawing from the race. Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa), for example, a prominent Cruz surrogate, wrote on Twitter: "Carson looks like he is out. Iowans need to know before they vote. Most will go to Cruz, I hope."

Carson, who placed fourth in the voting, blasted the "deceit and dirty tricks and lies" during a speech before his supporters there. Cruz apologized to Carson on Tuesday and said his team should have promoted Carson's statement denying the rumors.

"During primetime of the Iowa Caucus, Cruz put out a release that @RealBenCarson was quitting the race, and to caucus (or vote) for Cruz," Trump tweeted.

Trump also hit Cruz over a provocative mailer the senator's campaign had sent some voters in Iowa.

"Many people voted for Cruz over Carson because of this Cruz fraud," he said. "Also, Cruz sent out a VOTER VIOLATION certificate to thousands of voters. ... The Voter Violation certificate gave poor marks to the unsuspecting voter(grade of F) and told them to clear it up by voting for Cruz. Fraud."

The real-estate mogul was humble in his concession speech Monday night, but has since launched attacks on Cruz and retweeted supporters who have called the Iowa caucuses "meaningless" and given Trump other encouragements heading into New Hampshire, the next primary state.

At a rally on Tuesday night, Trump repeated his attacks about the legality of Cruz's candidacy for president, saying that he was "born in Canada" and warning that if he locks down the Republican nomination, Democrats are "going to sue his a-- off."

Cruz was born in Canada to an American mother, but most legal experts believe he meets the Constitution's requirement that presidents be "natural born" citizens.

The Cruz campaign didn't immediately respond to a request for comment Wednesday morning.

Here are Trump's tweets on the issue:

Colin Campbell contributed to this report.

NOW WATCH: All of the top polls called Iowa wrong

See Also:

SEE ALSO: 'Iowa is meaningless': Donald Trump retweets flurry of cheering supporters after loss to Ted Cruz

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