Trump blames media after poor polls
DONALD Trump has explained why he is behind Hillary Clinton in the polls - biased media coverage.
In a barrage of angry tweets, Mr Trump complained about the supposed media bias after the New York Times published a report about the troubled efforts of his campaign staff to restrain him.
"If the disgusting and corrupt media covered me honestly and didn't put false meaning into the words I say, I would be beating Hillary by 20%," he tweeted on Sunday.
He unleashed an attack on the Times specifically for its use of anonymous sources, accusing the paper of writing fiction and threatening to revoke its media credentials to cover his campaign.
"When they write dishonest stories, we should be a little tough," Mr Trump told a crowd at a rally in Fairfield, Connecticut.
News outlets have placed significant scrutiny on remarks made by Mr Trump at rallies and during news conferences.
In recent weeks, the New York real estate mogul has suggested Russian intelligence hack Hillary Clinton's email servers; implied "Second Amendment people" could assassinate either his opponent or potential Supreme Court justices; and said both the Democratic nominee and President Barack Obama "founded" Islamic State.
Mr Trump has backtracked from all three remarks by claiming he was being sarcastic.
In an interview with Chris Wallace from Fox News, Mike Pence explained that his running mate was saying the policies of the President and Democratic nominee created the right circumstances for the Islamist extremist group to flourish.
"He was making a point that needs to be made, that there is no question that the failed policies of President Barack Obama and then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, in the wider Middle East, created a vacuum within Iraq in which IS was able to arise," Mr Pence said.
However, Mr Pence's explanation contradicted what Mr Trump told conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt. "No, I meant he's the founder of IS," Mr Trump replied.
"I do. He was the most valuable player. I give him the most valuable player award. I give her, too, by the way, Hillary Clinton."
Mrs Clinton leads in all of the most recent major polls by a substantial margin.
But as Mr Trump sees it, his lower polling numbers are a result of unfair media representation of words he actually says.
"I am not only fighting Crooked Hillary," he tweeted, "I am fighting the dishonest and corrupt media and her government protection process."