Donald Trump Blames Obama For For-Profit School Lawsuit

Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
Aug. 26 2013 2:12 PM

Donald Trump Responds to For-Profit University Lawsuit Like Only Donald Trump Can

Donald Trump speaks onstage during a news conference after the 2013 Miss USA pageant at PH Live at Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino on June 16, 2013 in Las Vegas, Nevada

Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images

As my colleague Daniel Politi reported over the weekend, the New York state attorney general's office is suing Donald Trump for $40 million, claiming his for-profit investment school was nothing more than "an elaborate bait-and-switch" where classes were often just sales pitches for more expensive classes. On Monday, Trump went on Good Morning America and Fox News and responded as only Trump can. Or, more specifically, he responded the only way Trump seems to know how to respond when things go against him: by blaming President Obama. Mediaite transcribed one of the exchanges in question:

Josh Voorhees Josh Voorhees

Josh Voorhees is a Slate senior writer. He lives in Iowa City. 

Trump found it highly suspicious that [New York AG Eric] Schneiderman met with Obama in Syracuse on Thursday and then filed the lawsuit on Saturday. "This guy is a political hack looking to get publicity," Trump said. "By the way, he meets with President Obama on Thursday evening in Syracuse. On Saturday at 1:00 he files a suit."
"You’re saying President Obama is behind this?" [George] Stephanopoulos asked. “You just threw the charge out there. Do you believe it or not?”
"Who ever heard of a government agency bringing a lawsuit on Saturday afternoon?" Trump said. "He’s been looking into this thing for two years. He brings a lawsuit on Saturday afternoon, right after he meets with President Obama. Maybe it’s a mini IRS."

Trump is also blaming Schneiderman, claiming that the New York attorney general filed the suit because Trump refused to donate to his campaign. In a moment that only a select few PR pros could pull off with a straight face and without even a hint of self-awareness, Trump told Fox & Friends this of Schneiderman: "He figures by going after Trump, he can get some publicity, which he will get, but we’ll try and make it uncomfortable as possible."

Appearing on CNBC, Schneiderman brushed aside Trump's defense(s). "You can't ... defraud 5,000 people out of $40 million and then distract things by saying things like, 'Oh, this is a conspiracy between me and President Obama,' or I was soliciting money from people who had some affiliation with him. The case speaks for itself. The documentary evidence is overwhelming," the attorney general said.

***Follow @JoshVoorhees and the rest of the @slatest team on Twitter.**



Scalia’s Liberal Streak

The conservative justice’s most brilliant—and surprisingly progressive—moments on the bench.

Colorado Is Ground Zero for the Fight Over Female Voters

There’s a Way to Keep Ex-Cons Out of Prison That Pays for Itself. Why Don’t More States Use It?

The NFL Explains How It Sees “the Role of the Female”

The Music Industry Is Ignoring Some of the Best Black Women Singing R&B


Theo’s Joint and Vanessa’s Whiskey

No sitcom did the “Very Special Episode” as well as The Cosby Show.


The Other Huxtable Effect

Thirty years ago, The Cosby Show gave us one of TV’s great feminists.

Cliff Huxtable Explains the World: Five Lessons From TV’s Greatest Dad

Why Television Needs a New Cosby Show Right Now

  News & Politics
Sept. 18 2014 8:20 PM A Clever Attempt at Explaining Away a Vote Against the Farm Bill
Sept. 18 2014 6:02 PM A Chinese Company Just Announced the Biggest IPO in U.S. History
The Slate Quiz
Sept. 18 2014 11:44 PM Play the Slate News Quiz With Jeopardy! superchampion Ken Jennings.
  Double X
Sept. 18 2014 8:07 PM Crying Rape False rape accusations exist, and they are a serious problem.
  Slate Plus
Behind the Scenes
Sept. 18 2014 1:23 PM “It’s Not Every Day That You Can Beat the World Champion” An exclusive interview with chess grandmaster Fabiano Caruana.
Brow Beat
Sept. 18 2014 4:33 PM The Top 5 Dadsplaining Moments From The Cosby Show
Future Tense
Sept. 18 2014 6:48 PM By 2100 the World's Population Could Be 11 Billion
  Health & Science
Sept. 18 2014 3:35 PM Do People Still Die of Rabies? And how do you know if an animal is rabid?
Sports Nut
Sept. 18 2014 11:42 AM Grandmaster Clash One of the most amazing feats in chess history just happened, and no one noticed.