From Hadas Gold and Kenneth P. Vogel writing at Politico:
Luntz has insisted in an interview with Business Insider he has nothing against Trump and is only interested in accurately assessing the race.
But sources told POLITICO that, in the days before the Aug. 6 Fox News presidential debate where a Luntz-run focus group panned Trump’s performance, the pollster told a closed-door gathering of major conservative donors in Southern California that Trump was dangerous to Republicans and was “turning what we believe into a joke.”
People present at the gathering, which was organized by the political network helmed by billionaire industrialists Charles and David Koch, said Luntz argued that Trump is not a true conservative, but is “addicted” to the limelight and is likely to become increasingly enticed by the prospect of launching a third party presidential bid the longer he stays in the race.
Asked Monday about his private comments in Southern California, Luntz declined to directly address what he said at the donor confab, though he did not back away from the substance of his critique.
Luntz said people often “hear half of the comments or they hear what they want to hear and they get it wrong,” but he also called out Trump for stoking voters’ anger, without giving proper solutions.
Read the rest of the story at Politico.