Washington: Donald Trump, the frontrunner for the Republican presidential nomination, met in Washington on Thursday with the chairman of the Republican National Committee, as tensions ran high between the candidate and his party.
Although Trump had previously announced he would be in Washington for meetings, his visit to the RNC, where he met with its chairman, Reince Priebus, came as a surprise.
It followed an announcement two days ago by Trump that he would refuse to support any candidate but himself as nominee in the race for the White House.
He also announced Tuesday that he no longer felt bound by the commitment he made in September to respect the outcome of the primaries and not run as an independent in November if he does not receive the party nomination.
"I have been treated very unfairly. By basically the RNC, the Republican party, the establishment," Trump said in an interview on CNN aired Tuesday.
Details were slow to emerge about his meeting with Priebus, but CNN, citing Republican sources, reported that the discussion was about convention rules and the delegate process.
Afterwards, Trump tweeted: "Just had a very nice meeting with @Reince Priebus and the @GOP. Looking forward to bringing the Party together --- and it will happen!"
According to Politico, he also held a meeting with his new foreign policy team and rolled out a committee led by two congressmen who will spearhead attempts to garner support among Washington`s political establishment.
If Trump does not win the 1,237 delegates needed to secure his party`s nomination outright, the nominee will have to be chosen through delegate voting at the July convention in Cleveland, Ohio.
At that point, delegates would no longer be bound to vote for the candidate they were sent to represent, and Trump could risk losing the nomination.
One of his two challengers, Texas Senator Ted Cruz or Ohio Governor John Kasich, could feasibly become the party`s nominee.
The process, which is called a contested or brokered convention, is extremely rare.
To help avoid the chance of a brokered convention, Trump announced Tuesday that he had hired Republican operative Paul Manafort to manage his delegate strategy.
Manafort has worked on strategy for former US presidents Gerald Ford, Ronald Reagan and George HW Bush during nominating conventions.