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Campaign manager defends Trump's Twitter rants, calls Clinton 'bizarro'

Donald Trump's campaign manager, Kellyanne Conway, told CNBC on Tuesday the Republican presidential nominee has the right to defend himself, reacting to the billionaire businessman's late night Twitter attacks.

There's never been "such a coordinated media attack" against a candidate, Conway said on "Squawk Box," and Trump's Twitter comments are his way of fighting back.

With 34 days until the November election, Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton holds a 46 percent to 40 percent lead over Trump, according to the latest NBC News|SurveyMonkey weekly tracking poll.

While critics have called Trump's temperament into question, Clinton has a "terrible temperament," Conway said, citing Clinton's "Why aren't I 50 points ahead?" line she delivered last month before labor leaders in Las Vegas.

"That was just bizarro," Conway said.

"I can tell her why she's not 50 points ahead. She's not even at 50 percent [support] because people don't trust her, people don't like her and they don't much want her to be president," Conway said.

Truthfulness, not just temperament, should be a quality that a president should possess, the Trump campaign manager said, adding he'd also be primed to deliver on his policy promises if the House and the Senate were to remain in Republican control.

"Trump is well-positioned ... to actually enact things that all these presidential candidates, and indeed presidents from both sides of the aisle, promise and never deliver," she continued. "I think people are willing to really roll the dice here."

On the tax issue of Trump's use of net operating losses to the tune of $916 million in 1995 and speculation he may have paid no income tax for nearly two decades, Conway said the real estate mogul did nothing wrong.

"It's not a loophole. It's a provision in the tax code," she said, arguing if the provision is such a big deal why didn't President Barack Obama ever change it when he had a Democratic House and Senate in his first two years.

Trump's proposed overhaul of the tax code would make things simpler, Conway said, deflecting a direct question about whether the net operating losses provision would be on the candidate's chopping block.


Following last week's first presidential debate and this coming Sunday's second meeting of Trump and Clinton, their respective running mates, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence and Virginia Sen. Tim Kaine, will meet in their only vice-presidential debate Tuesday night.

The VP debate will mainly feature attacks against the top of the ticket, Conway predicted, but she said she hopes the running mates will get a chance to contrast what they bring to the table.

Conway started the 2016 election running a super PAC that supported Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, who was runner-up to Trump in the primaries.