BY MARTIN KICH
Writing for Politico, Josh Gerstein has reported that hearings on the lawsuits against Trump University in both California and New York have been scheduled for the week in which the Republican National Convention will be held in Cleveland. Ironically, given Trump’s recurring assertions that Hillary Clinton may be under indictment during the fall campaign, the lawsuits against Trump are almost certain to extend through election day, if not beyond.
If the issues surrounding Trump University are largely new to you, Gerstein provides a succinct overview: “The lawsuits generally claim that Trump misrepresented that his Trump University instructors were handpicked by him and that they had extensive background in real-estate. In fact, Trump has acknowledged he didn’t know or meet most of the teachers. One was a convicted felon. Trump has said at least one instructor lied about his background. The New York case also argues that the Trump University name violated state law because it was not a bona fide university.
Thus far, the defenses offered by Trump and his attorneys seem heavily couched in legalese and short on any willingness to admit that Trump University could have possibly disappointed any of its students: “Trump and his lawyers have argued that any misrepresentations were immaterial, because the students got valuable information and mentorships from the program. Trump also says some of the plaintiffs took part in videos praising their instructors, but are now claiming to be dissatisfied. Some of the former students said they felt pressured to endorse the program, since they were hoping for real-estate investing help from the same instructors.”
Lastly, Gerstein highlights how Trump has been trying to deflect attention from the deficiencies of his “university”: “In a series of public appearances in February, Trump said Curiel [the judge assigned to the case in California] seemed to be biased against him because the judge ‘happens to be Spanish’ and could be expected to disagree with Trump’s strong statements against illegal immigration. The real estate mogul said he might move to disqualify Curiel, but no such motion has been made and Trump’s attorney did not raise any issues about the judge during a hearing last month. (Curiel, who was born in Indiana, is of Latino origin.)”
Yes, you read—heard—that correctly: Trump is suggesting that people might be biased against him because of his very obvious bias against groups that include them—even though he keeps asserting on the campaign trail that “the Latinos love me,” as do the members of just about every other group whom he has gone out of his way to vilify.
Gerstein’s complete article is available at: http://www.politico.com/blogs/under-the-radar/2016/04/judge-sets-trump-university-hearing-for-1st-day-of-gop-convention-222468#ixzz47Ee3wgLY .