By blaming the process rather than his own inadequacies as a manager, Mr. Trump is trying to shift focus after Senator Ted Cruz of Texas outmaneuvered him in delegate contests in states like Colorado, North Dakota and Iowa, losses that could end up denying Mr. Trump the nomination.
Asked about the appearance of disorganization, Mr. Trump said in an interview, “You have to remember I’m leading.” He added, “I’m more than 200 delegates ahead, so over all, I’m doing very well.”
But in what sounded like a wink-wink aside, he said, “Don’t forget, I only complain about the ones where we have difficulty.”
The new approach is a tacit admission that Mr. Trump’s campaign, which has been so reliant on national news coverage and mass communication via Twitter, has not been able to compete in the often intimate and personal game that is delegate courtship…
Mr. Trump has a pattern of claiming fraud when an election does not go his way. And his critics say this kind of misdirection is his specialty.
“If Trump can’t win something, he’ll always say it’s someone else’s fault,” said Stuart Stevens, a Republican strategist who has advised several presidential candidates, most recently Mitt Romney in 2012. “Donald Trump is a place you go to settle scores,” he added, noting Mr. Trump’s tendency to play on grievances, whether political, economic or racial.