New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman, in a television interview Thursday, called Trump University a “straight-up fraud” and predicted he would prevail in his lawsuit against the defunct for-profit program affiliated with Donald Trump.
The Republican presidential candidate, meanwhile, vowed to bring back the real estate seminars amid renewed public interest.
“After the litigation is disposed of and the case won, I have instructed my execs to open Trump U(?), so much interest in it! I will be pres,” read a tweet on Trump’s account.
Schneiderman, a Democrat, said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” that the businessman served only as a “pitchman,” and thousands of people were “duped” out of millions of dollars believing they could learn Trump’s secrets to success in real estate seminars.
Trump had nothing to do with the curriculum and testified under oath that he had not hand-picked the instructors, as he had claimed in a promo, Schneiderman said.
“It’s like selling people something you say is a Mercedes and it turns out to be a Volkswagen,” Schneiderman said. “And even if you say, ‘Well, I actually like the Volkswagen,’ it’s still fraud, because it’s not a Mercedes. This was not a university.”
Trump has said he believes Schneiderman’s civil action is politically motivated because the attorney general supports his rival, Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. Schneiderman said the lawsuit preceded Trump’s bid for the White House.
Trump’s campaign on Wednesday released a video with former Trump University students giving positive testimony about their experiences. The Associated Press found that those in the clip had business ties to Trump.
The presidential candidate has derided the judge in a separate class-action lawsuit in California as unfit and made allusions to U.S. Federal Judge Gonzalo Curiel’s Latino background.
Trump on Thursday tweeted, “Even though I have a very biased and unfair judge in the Trump U civil case in San Diego, I have thousands of great reviews & will win case!”