Donald Trump’s unprecedented—and utterly absurd—attacks against the federal judge presiding over two class-action suits over Trump University took the inevitable (bigoted) turn towards the logically surreal Thursday. The presumptive Republican candidate for president has already, of course, called U.S. District Judge Gonzalo Curiel a “hater” and a “total disgrace.” During a campaign rally last week, Trump tried a different tack during a long, meandering twelve-minute (!) rant about, among other things, Curiel’s ethnicity. Surprise!
“The judge, who happens to be, we believe, Mexican, which is great, I think that’s fine,” Trump said during the rally. Judge Curiel is from Indiana. Curiel’s parents emigrated from Mexico. On Thursday, Trump took this new legal reasoning he concocted to its logical end during an interview with the Wall Street Journal:
… Mr. Trump said U.S. District Judge Gonzalo Curiel had “an absolute conflict” in presiding over the litigation given that he was “of Mexican heritage” and a member of a Latino lawyers’ association. Mr. Trump said the background of the judge, who was born in Indiana to Mexican immigrants, was relevant because of his campaign stance against illegal immigration and his pledge to seal the southern U.S. border. “I’m building a wall. It’s an inherent conflict of interest,” Mr. Trump said.
Just to recap: Being an American citizen of Mexican descent is a conflict of interest in Trump’s America.