Trump: Can’t Trust Judge Curiel to Be Fair Because He’s Mexican [VIDEO]

Trump: Can’t Trust Judge Curiel to Be Fair Because He’s Mexican [VIDEO]

Trump: Can’t Trust Judge Curiel to Be Fair Because He’s Mexican [VIDEO]

A few days ago, presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump, currently the defendant in a lawsuit charging his now-defunct Trump University with fraud, attacked the presiding judge in a raging campaign rally.

On Thursday Trump upped the ante in his attack, saying in an interview that U.S. District Judge Gonzalo Curiel had “an absolute conflict” in presiding over the court proceedings because he was “of Mexican heritage,” and a member of a Hispanic lawyers’ association. “I’m building the wall, I’m building the wall. I have a Mexican judge. He’s of Mexican heritage. He should have recused himself, not only for that, for other things,” Trump said.


That makes about as much sense as General Eisenhower being rejected as Commanding General of the European Theatre of Operations in World War II due to his German heritage.

University of Pennsylvania law professor Stephen Burbank called Trump’s assertions “absolute nonsense,” and added “If this continues, I would hope that some prominent federal judges would set Mr. Trump straight on what’s appropriate and what’s not in our democracy.”

Poor Paul Ryan. Fresh off his reluctant endorsement of Trump earlier in the week, the Speaker of the House was faced with having to explain away another outrageous Trump comment, this one tinged with racist overtones:

“Look, the comment about the judge the other day just was out of left field for my mind. It’s reasoning I don’t relate to. I completely disagree with the thinking behind that. And so, he clearly says and does things I don’t agree with, and I’ve had to speak up from time to time when that has occurred, and I’ll continue to do that if it’s necessary. I hope it’s not.”

It’s ironic that Trump believes that Judge Curiel can’t be trusted to fairly preside (in TrumpWorld, that must mean Trump wins) over his court case due to his ethnic heritage. As a California federal prosecutor in the 1990’s, Gonzalo Curiel went into hiding on a naval base, protected by U.S. marshals. A secretly recorded conversation from inside a San Diego prison revealed that a Mexican cartel gunman had permission to kill the judge, who was working to prosecute a drug cartel run by the Arellano Felix brothers.

Under TrumpFire: Judge Gonzalo Curiel.

Judge Gonzalo Curiel is fully American, born in East Chicago, Indiana, to Mexican immigrant parents who became naturalized citizens. Judge Curiel is somewhat older than me, but like him I also came from Northwest Indiana. I remember the area at that time as teeming with immigrants — Germans (like my grandparents), Lithuanians, Poles, Serbians, Greeks, Italians — all were drawn by the industrial work in the steel mills of the region. Blacks and Hispanics were also well-represented in the demographics.

Judge Curiel as a child in East Chicago, Indiana. He is second from right. Credit:

Judge Curiel’s father, Salvador, came to Indiana by way of Arizona in the 1920’s. He married his wife Francisca in Mexico in 1946, and she, like her husband, also became an American citizen.

Here’s an irony: Judge Curiel’s father arrived in the United States and became a citizen earlier than Donald Trump’s mother, who arrived from Scotland in 1930 and became a citizen in 1942. Using Trump’s logic, shouldn’t we then be concerned about his potential partiality towards Great Britain, and in particular Scotland, should he become President of the United States?

Basically, what Trump is saying is that Judge Curiel — who was first appointed to the bench in 2006 by CA Republican Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger — can’t be trusted to be impartial due to his Mexican immigrant heritage. Yet Trump sees himself as trustworthy despite his British immigrant heritage. As Leon Wolf at Red State put it, that’s just overt racism.

Written by

Kim is a pint-sized patriot who packs some big contradictions. She is a Baby Boomer who never became a hippie, an active Republican who first registered as a Democrat (okay, it was to help a sorority sister's father in his run for sheriff), and a devout Lutheran who practices yoga. Growing up in small-town Indiana, now living in the Kansas City metro, Kim is a conservative Midwestern gal whose heart is also in the Seattle area, where her eldest daughter, son-in-law, and grandson live. Kim is a working speech pathologist who left school system employment behind to subcontract to an agency, and has never looked back. She describes her conservatism as falling in the mold of Russell Kirk's Ten Conservative Principles. Don't know what they are? Google them!

  • Mike says:

    Trump is an embarrassment in so many ways. God help us if he ever becomes president. Ditto Hillary.

  • GWB says:

    One point in Trump’s favor: I had read the judge was a member of LaRaza. If that is true, then Trump is absolutely right about him needing to recuse. If not, then there’s some bogus info flying around.

    • Kim Quade says:

      I have heard conflicting reports on the lawyers group the judge is associated with. At the time of the post’s writing, the information was that it was not part of the more infamous La Raza.
      It’s not unusual for plaintiffs to request a new judge. It was stupid (but revealing) for Trump to criticize the judge for being “Mexican.” He could have quietly worked behind the scenes with his attorneys to obtain another judge. But this is Trump we’re talking about, so. . .

      • GWB says:

        not part of the more infamous La Raza

        The organization has “La Raza” as part of its name. That’s enough for me (it means “The Race”, and that makes it pretty clearly racist, imo), regardless of its lack of affiliation with the other organization.

        I agree about Trump not grasping the concept of “subtlety”. “Bull in a china shop” seems an inadequate description at times.

        • Kim Quade says:

          Again, when I wrote the post the information I had available was from a Megyn Kelly and Bill Bennett (?) discussion of the judge. She stated with certainty that it was not part of the same group; she is an attorney, and I put more confidence in her statement made on a news network rather than the hair-on-fire pro-Trump blogs. She may be wrong. I still don’t know. It’s linked in the post if you are interested.
          It’s still interesting that the judge has done more to protect the US from drug cartels than Trump ever has. Personally, I don’t think his wall will be built even if he becomes president.

          • GWB says:

            I agree they might not be related directly. But, again, the lawyer group had “La Raza” in its name. And that’s pretty damning, regardless of the other group’s existence.
            Though, you might want to walk back that trusting of a news network. 😉

            The wall will never happen, as long as we’re relying on the national gov’t to do it.
            And I concur on the judge doing more to stop drug cartels than The Donald. Maybe The Donald can get drugs legalized, but only where other vices are legal (like casinos), then he can import cheap Asian knockoffs to his hotels and put the cartels out of business that way? Sadly, that’s got a better chance of working than almost anything the national gov’t is currently doing.
            Currently, The Donald appears to be operating under the concept that “no press is bad press”, even when it comes to legal troubles. I’m not sure it works that way in the legal realm.

          • GWB says:

            One important thing to note, imo: it seems none of the MSM are even mentioning the judge’s membership in a racially separatist legal organization. It seems they are casting it as Trump objecting merely because the judge is of Mexican descent. That’s dishonest, no matter where you fall on the question of that group’s allegiances.

            • Kim Quade says:

              I wonder if Trump was even aware of the connection? Probably not, otherwise he’d be shouting it all over the media.
              Instead, he gives a dog whistle to his alt-right groupies about untrustworthy Mexicans.
              It’s that kind of attitude that led to my German-born grandparents — who had been US citizens for decades when WWII broke out — being investigated by the FBI. Or even more egregious, Japanese-Americans placed in camps and having their businesses and property taken simply for their race.

              • GWB says:

                I was under the impression it was his aides touting the judge’s associations. Either way, it’s an issue that shouldn’t be swept under the rug. Neither should it be something dealt with by screeching it in a tweet or a stump speech.

  • joes says:

    “That makes about as much sense as General Eisenhower being rejected as Commanding General of the European Theatre of Operations in World War II due to his German heritage.”
    was eisenhower a member of a german supremacist group? was eisenhower a member of “the german generals club”?
    this judge is a member of a latino supremacist group.

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