U.S. Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks during an interview with hosts Matt Lauer and Savannah Guthrie on NBC's "Today" show in New York

Trump, Cruz spar as Republican Party rejects rules change

By Amanda Becker and Steve Holland WASHINGTON/HOLLYWOOD, Fla. (Reuters) – Republican presidential contenders Donald Trump and Ted Cruz vied on Thursday for the support of party leaders who view them as outsiders, and turned a national controversy over a law on transgender bathroom use into a campaign issue. Saying the law, passed by the Republican-controlled legislature, was unnecessary, Trump said North Carolina was “paying a big price” because of reaction from businesses that have halted or canceled plans to expand in the state unless it is repealed. Cruz, a U.S. senator from Texas who is a staunch social and fiscal conservative, expressed support for the law, and said the Republican front-runner had caved to political correctness as he seeks to lock down the party nomination and broaden his appeal ahead of the Nov. 8 election.

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