Donald Trump’s racist remarks on judges: How low will he go?
As the weeks of the campaign go by, the words coming out of the presumptive Republican nominee’s mouth only get more offensive.
Real estate mogul Donald Trump faces a major problem with lawsuits against the now defunct Trump University, a “college” that promised to teach paying students how to sell real estate. By most accounts, Trump U. was a failure. But one lawsuit provided an opportunity for the would-be narcissist-in-chief to hit new highs (or should that be lows?) on the racism scale.
Federal Judge Gonzalo Curiel, “a man who was born in Indiana, battled Mexican drug cartels as a federal prosecutor, and has been appointed by prominent Republicans,” according to a story in the New York Daily News, is being hit by Trump as “unfair” because “he’s a Mexican.” Curiel couldn’t possibly give Trump a fair trial, because “I’m building a wall,” Trump said at campaign stops and several TV appearances.
Despite the tone-deafness of these remarks, Trump outdid himself on Sunday talk shows. It’s not just “Mexican” judges who won’t be fair to Trump. According to the Daily News story:
Asked on CBS’ Face the Nation if a Muslim judge would treat him unfairly — since he has vowed to ban Muslims from entering America — the billionaire blowhard said: “It’s possible, yes. That would be possible, absolutely.”
If you’re going to include the race, ethnicity, religion, cultural heritage, gender, and God knows what other categories Trump has insulted, as being a quality that makes a judge “unfit” to rule on any lawsuit Trump is a part of, that leaves a pretty small judiciary. Anyone but straight white males of European extraction need not apply.
Oh, did we mention lawsuits? It turns out that Trump is the litigation king. A USA Today project examined the number of times Trump, his products, his casinos, his hotels, his golf courses, his whatever, have been the focus of court action, and it’s eye-popping.
Our project found about 3,500 legal actions involving Trump, including 1,900 where he or his companies were a plaintiff and about 1,300 in which he was the defendant. Due to his branding value, Trump is determined to defend his name and reputation.
There have been 70 new cases in the year since he announced his presidential run, about half filed by the Trump team and half filed against him.
The legal actions provide clues to the leadership style the billionaire businessman would bring to bear as commander in chief. He sometimes responds to even small disputes with overwhelming legal force. He doesn’t hesitate to deploy his wealth and legal firepower against adversaries with limited resources, such as homeowners. He sometimes refuses to pay real estate brokers, lawyers, and other vendors.
Given the over-the-top nature of Trump’s comments about judges, it’s not surprising that he’s been criticized by Democrats, including presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, and White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest, just to name a few. Earnest even got in a dig at Senate Republicans who are still failing to fulfill their constitutional duty to hold hearings on U.S. Supreme Court nominee Merrick Garland, who was nominated nearly three months ago. “For Republicans in the Senate who say they have concerns about the Republican presidential nominee’s views as it relates to judges, to also say that they are not going to confirm any judges to preserve the ability of the Republican presidential nominee to potentially make those appointments” is ridiculous, Earnest said.
But Republicans — who have gone out of their way to promise to support and vote for Trump even if they’re secretly holding their noses — must have felt they had no choice but to criticize Trump for his racial slurs. Several, such as New Hampshire Sen. Kelly Ayotte, who faces a tough re-election race, called for him to retract his remarks. Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, who had been touting himself as a possible vice presidential choice, said Trump’s comments were “inexcusable.”
Oh, heck, let’s let Republicans tell it in their own words — which have made it into a new ad by the Clinton campaign.
So the more Trump talks, the worse he sounds. To paraphrase President Obama in a 2012 debate with GOP nominee Mitt Romney, “Please proceed, Mr. Trump.”