Presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump said he wants his surrogates to attack the media and continue talking about his legal issues.
"The people asking the questions - those are the racists. I would go at ’em," Trump said during a conference call he held with campaign surrogates to discuss the ongoing controversy regarding the billionaire's comments about the heritage of a federal judge overseeing his Trump University lawsuit case, according to Bloomberg.
Trump has repeatedly said that federal judge Gonzalo Curiel, who is of Mexican heritage but was born in Indiana, has a bias against the presidential hopeful because of his plans to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.
“I’m building a wall. It’s an inherent conflict of interest,” Trump told the Wall Street Journal.
The lawsuit -- along with accusations of racism -- has led to a barrage of negative media attention for Trump. And during the conference call, former Arizona Governor Jan Brewer told Trump that his own campaign had asked surrogates to stop talking about the lawsuit. But Trump rejected that plan.
“Take that order and throw it the hell out,” he said. “Are there any other stupid letters that were sent to you folks? That's one of the reasons I want to have this call, because you guys are getting sometimes stupid information from people that aren't so smart.”
The email in question was sent by Erica Freeman, a communications staffer for the campaign, and was also sent to the most prominent Trump campaign staffers, including campaign manager Corey Lewandowski and campaign chairman Paul Manafort's aide, Rick Gates.
Surrogates were to say that “they're not authorized to discuss matters concerning the Trump Organization, including corporate news such as the Trump University case,” according to the email, which was obtained by Bloomberg. “The best possible response is, ‘The case will be tried in the courtroom in front of a jury—not in the media.'”
But Trump appears to want to continue making his lawsuit a public issue and he wants the media that asks about it to feel some pain.
“I'd let them have it,” he said.