Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson said he thinks Ted Cruz's campaign's "dirty tricks" may have affected the outcome of the Iowa caucuses.
"I think it did, yes," he said today at a news conference at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. "I was getting a lot of intelligence from a lot of different places saying I was going to do extraordinarily well. And I do think it affected that."
During the caucuses on Monday night, Cruz's campaign sent an email to Iowa precinct captains saying that Carson was "taking time off" from campaigning and "making a big announcement next week." The email also encouraged to "inform any Carson caucus goers of this news and urge them to caucus for Cruz."
“It’s clear that there were people who tried to take advantage of a situation, who tried to distort information," Carson said. "Sen. Cruz told me that he was not aware of that when I talked to him, and that he did not agree with that kind of thing. We’ll wait and see what he does to demonstrate that.”
Cruz said in an interview with Fox News on Tuesday: "That was a mistake on our part and, as I said, my respect and admiration for Ben could not be higher.”
“We would like to say how disappointed we are in the dirty tricks that were played in tonight’s campaign," Carson's campaign Manager Barry Bennett said Monday night. "To have campaigns come out and send emails to their caucus speakers and suggest that Dr. Carson is doing anything but staying in this race is low in American politics and we are very sorry to see that have happened.”
The former neurosurgeon would not directly answer whether he think Cruz should fire the staffers that started the rumors.
"If he's in total agreement with it, then he doesn't have to make any changes," Carson said today.
But Carson brought up his own campaign staff shakeup: “When I discovered that there were things in my campaign that I couldn’t agree with after really doing an investigation. I made changes and I think that’s what a good leader does. If there are things that are going on that you don’t agree with, you have to make changes.”
Fellow GOP candidate Donald Trump also jumped into the fray on Twitter.
“Many people voted for Cruz over Carson because of this Cruz fraud,” Trump tweeted. “Also, Cruz sent out a VOTER VIOLATION certificate to thousands of voters.”
The real estate mogul argued for a “new election” or for the Texas senator's results to be “nullified.”
Carson noted today that that he started his campaign as a "reluctant warrior" but pledged to continue as a presidential candidate.
"I will continue to be a voice," Carson said.
ABC News' Ryan Struyk contributed to this report.