Trump: I Didn't Invite Mike Tyson to Speak at RNC

CNN/ Newswire | 6/29/2016, 9:41 a.m.
Donald Trump tweeted Tuesday that he didn't invite "Iron" Mike Tyson to speak at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, ...
Mike Tyson and Donald Trump

By Daniella Diaz


WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Donald Trump tweeted Tuesday that he didn't invite "Iron" Mike Tyson to speak at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio, dismissing a report that he wanted the former heavyweight champ at the event.

Trump tweeted, "Iron Mike Tyson was not asked to speak at the Convention though I'm sure he would do a good job if he was. The media makes everything up!"

Trump was responding to a Bloomberg News report that said Trump's team was looking to line up a slate of sports figures to appear at the convention, including Tyson, ex-Chicago Bears coach Mike Ditka, former Indiana University basketball coach Bobby Knight and NASCAR chief Brian France. The report said the figures' roles at the convention had not been finalized.

Trump did not reference the others in his tweet. CNN has reached out to Trump's campaign about the speakers and not immediately heard back.

Earlier this month, Trump said he wanted to have a night for sports heroes at the convention next month.

"I'm thinking about getting some of the great sports people I know, who like me a lot," the presumptive Republican nominee said at a rally in Richmond, Virginia. "We may call it 'The Winners' evening."

Tyson, who has played himself in the first and second "Hangover" movies and had a one-man show on Broadway, endorsed Trump for president.

The two have known each other for many years before Trump announced his campaign for president -- Trump defended the fighter after he was convicted of rape in 1992, saying that Tyson was "railroaded."

Tyson endorsed Trump for president last year, saying on the Huffington Post Live, "He should be president of the United States."

"Let's try something new. Let's run America like a business, where no colors matter. Whoever can do the job, gets the job," Tyson said in the interview.

Former presidential candidate Carly Fiorina slammed Trump for touting his endorsement from Tyson when she was Texas Sen. Ted Cruz's vice presidential pick.

At a rally in Indiana, Trump told supporters about his endorsement, saying, "I love it. He sent out a tweet. Mike. Iron Mike. You know, all the tough guys endorse me. I like that, OK?"

"Sorry, I don't consider a convicted rapist a tough guy," Fiorina told reporters after his rally. "And I think it says a lot about Donald Trump's campaign and his character that he is standing up and cheering for an endorsement by Mike Tyson."