“DONALD TRUMP ASSAULTS A FEDERAL JUDGE”
Donald J. Trump has a racist past that includes being sued by the U.S. Government for racist housing discrimination in handling rental applications by blacks and Hispanics for New York City apartments. By signing a consent decree Donald and his father, Frederick, admitted to discriminatory and illegal practices that violated federal law.
More racism is found in Trump’s announcement for President on June 16, 2015 when he unloaded on Mexico and Mexicans declaring Mexican “perfidy” in “sending” and forcing Mexican “criminals” and “rapists” to the United States and “ripping off” the United States in trade and jobs. He offered no proof of his allegations nor has he since.
In February, 2016, Trump leveled charges that a United States federal judge of the San Diego federal court – Gonzalo Curiel – is a “disgrace, is incompetent and unfair” towards Trump in law suits against Trump and his defunct “Trump University.” The reason, Trump exclaims, is that the judge has ruled against him because the judge is “Mexican” and he, Trump, is promising to build a “wall” on the Mexican border. When it is pointed out that Judge Curiel is not a Mexican that he was born in Indiana, U.S.A., Trump changes his charge to the Judge is being disgracefully “unfair” to him because Judge Curiel is of “Mexican Heritage.”
The Republican Speaker of the House Paul Ryan vehemently objects to Trump’s charge; Senate Leader, Mitch McConnell, in a lawyerly manner also disagrees with Trump’s allegation. More shocking, however, than what these two Republican leaders express about this deeply racist Trump position is what former Speaker of the House and ardent Trump supporter Newt Gingrich said on Fox News on Sunday, June 5, 2016. If, Gingrich said, anyone challenged or questioned rulings by Supreme Court Associate Justice Clarence Thomas, a Black, as incompetent and unfair because he is Black, conservatives would scream “racism” at the top of their lungs; they would be incensed and they would be right.
This Trump tantrum against a federal judge who has different DNA than his German and Scottish DNA is not the first such tantrum ever thrown against a federal judge.
The Atlantic’s Garret Epps writes that “Constance Baker Motley, the first female African American judge, faced a similar challenge in a 1975 sex-discrimination case. ‘[I]f background or sex or race of each judge were, by definition, sufficient grounds for removal,’ she responded, ‘no judge on this court could hear this case.’ Catholic and Mormon judges have also been challenged; Judge Michael Mukasey (and former Bush 43 Attorney General), an Orthodox Jew, was asked to step aside from a case against a Muslim defendant in 1994.”
Chief Circuit judge Ralph Winter, a Reagan appointee handled complaints like those of Trump with a ruling that is appropriate here because Trump also claims that Judge Curiel is also prejudiced against him because Curiel was appointed by President Barack Obama; Winter wrote: “Courts have repeatedly held that matters such as race or ethnicity are improper bases for challenging a judge’s impartiality…Finally, appointment by a particular administration and membership in a particular racial or ethnic group are in combination not grounds for questioning a judge’s impartiality. Zero plus zero is zero.”
Apparently, Trump is unaware that Judge Curiel was appointed to the California Superior Court by Republican Arnold Schwarzenegger.
As to Trump’s claim of Curiel’s incompetence, here was Curiel’s response to a U.S. Senator when he was confirmed for his judgeship: “I believe that my career has prepared me to handle federal civil litigation. Prior to becoming a prosecutor, I practiced civil law for 10 years…since becoming a state judge, I have presided over civil family law cases for three years and civil unlimited jurisdiction cases for one year and three months. During my civil tenure, I have handled 16 civil trials including 11 jury trials with an average length of eight days. These civil trials include cases involving intellectual property law, employment law, and wage and hour law…I have managed a civil docket consisting of more than 600 cases and am responsible for handling all aspects of the cases, including discovery matters, summary adjudication motions, trials, and post-trial motions.”
There is only one word for Donald Trump’s verbal attack on Federal District Judge Gonzalo Curiel from the state of Indiana, USA – RACISM, pure unadulterated RACISM. Donald Trump – in my humble opinion as an American citizen who happened to have been born in Mexico and has “Mexican Heritage” as Trump would say—Donsld Trump is a racist.
Or, more charitably, as Circuit Court Chief Judge Winter wrote about claims of prejudice based on ethnicity and race: “Zero plus zero is zero.”
Contreras is the author of the newly published MURDER IN THE MOUNTAINS available at Amazon.com