— -- Donald Trump took aim at Ted Cruz during a town hall in Iowa Friday night, saying he was beholden to big oil and taking a swipe at his Cuban roots in what he termed a "two person race" for the state.
"Not a lot of Evangelicals come out of Cuba in all fairness," Trump told the crowd in an apparent shot Cruz's heritage.
After securing key endorsements within the Iowa evangelical christian community, Cruz's support continues to grow, surpassing Trump in the Monmouth University Poll released Monday of likely Caucus-Goers.
Trump also came out swinging against Cruz's connections to the oil industry and refusal to back ethanol subsidies.
"Everything I say he agrees with me, but with the ethanol he’s got to come a long way cause right now he's for the oil," Trump said talking about Cruz's stance on an issue that's resulted in thousands of jobs in Iowa. "I say to myself, 'If Ted Cruz is against ethanol, how is he winning in Iowa?”
Trump linked Cruz's opposition to ethanol subsidies to his rival's Texas roots. "The oil companies give him a lot of money," he said. "I’m with you," Trump said at the Iowa State Fairgrounds.
During the question and answer portion of the event, a man asked Trump if he won the nomination, would he consider Cruz as a Vice President or nominate him for the Supreme Court. Trump reiterated he likes the senator and said "we would certainly have things in mind for Ted."
The real estate mogul also took shots at Chris Christie, who is hot off an endorsement by the New Hampshire Union Leader and on the rise in the Granite state.
"I’m leading big in New Hampshire. Christie got an endorsement from this crazy newspaper up there," said Trump.
With seven weeks to go till the Feb. 1 caucus and Cruz hot on his trail, Trump made sure Iowans knew how important their state is to his campaign.
"If we win Iowa, I think we win virtually every state in the union and it's over," said Trump. "I’m going to be here a lot in January. You’re going to be so sick of me. You’re probably going to say, I can’t stand the guy."
The Cruz campaign declined comment.