Republican frontrunner Donald Trump said in an interview Thursday evening that representatives from the Fox News Channel have called him “many” times in attempts to persuade him to participate in the debate.
The remarks came in an interview on Trump’s plane with CNN’s Brianna Keilar.
— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) January 29, 2016
“By the time they apologized—,” Trump said, before Keilar interjected.
“They on the phone call apologized?” the CNN reporter asked.
“They could not have been nicer,” Trump said.
“You got an apology?” Keilar asked.
“Yes. Could not have been nicer,” Trump said.
The billionaire, however, declined to name the executive that he said issued the apology.
A representative for the network said in a statement that Fox News Chairman and CEO Roger Ailes had three “brief conversations” with Trump Thursday.
“In the course of those conversations, we acknowledged his concerns about a satirical observation we made in order to quell the attacks on Megyn Kelly, and prevent her from being smeared any further,” the statement said.
The New York Times reported that Trump said he had considered attending the debate, but concluded it would not be feasible because the event he was hosting that night was at the same time. A representative for Fox News said that Trump offered to participate in the debate if the network agreed to donate $5 million to his charities.
Editor’s Note: This story has been updated with comment from Fox News.
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