(CNN) – Donald Trump said Republican Sen. Lamar Alexander should “stop trying to get free publicity on the back of Donald Trump” on Monday, a day after the Tennessee senator told CNN that Trump has "absolutely no chance of winning" a presidential race.
“Sen. Lamar Alexander, who I do not know and have heard very little about over the years, perhaps because of a certain ineffectiveness, has recently stolen my line, word for word, about [Texas Rep.] Ron Paul, by stating that ‘Donald Trump has absolutely no chance of winning’ in a Presidential contest,” Trump said in a statement.
Alexander was discussing the pool of potential 2012 presidential contenders on CNN's "State of the Union" on Sunday when he told CNN’s Candy Crowley that there's “always someone like Donald Trump who has absolutely no chance of winning,” and that Trump is “famous for being famous."
The real estate tycoon and television star has repeatedly said he is seriously considering a run for president, but for now is focusing on the latest season of his hit show, “Celebrity Apprentice.” Trump told CNN last week that that he will not make a decision about a bid for the White House until June.
In a Newsweek/Daily Beast poll release last month, Trump was just two percentage points behind President Obama in a hypothetical head-to-head ballot, 43 to 41, and well within the poll’s sampling error of plus or minus 3.5 percent.
Shortly after the poll's release, the potential candidate boasted of the positive numbers, saying in a YouTube video that they came as no surprise because his is a “message of common sense.” In his response to Alexander, Trump likewise predicted that he would fair well in the senator’s home state.
“As a Republican, I will not be looking for his support but think that, if I run, I will do very well in the state of Tennessee,” Trump said.
“The great people of Tennessee, like me, do not like being taken advantage of by the rest of the world, whether it’s China, South Korea, India, Pakistan, (who take our aid but won’t deliver Osama bin Laden), the OPEC nations who are destroying our country with their pricing of oil, or many others," Trump said.