Presumptive Republican nominee and notorious hatemonger Donald Trump recently finds himself in the middle of one too many scandals concerning veterans — a demographic he has publicly pandered to since the beginning of his presidential campaign.
Earlier this week, the business mogul had to reveal details about the reported $6 million he raised for military vets in January. As it turned out, over half of the organizations only received the funds after media grilled the billionaire about the donations he supposedly made over four months ago.
The White House hopeful has repeatedly promised to “put our service men and women on a path to success” if elected president, whereas his own university is accused of defrauding a number of those men and women.
Trump University is facing a lawsuit for scamming scores of students, including vets, who paid large amounts of money to learn Trump's secrets to real estate. Apart from swindling, the institution also reportedly fired an Iraq war veteran in 2007 because of her military commitments.
Corinne Sommer, an army staff sergeant deployed to Iraq in 2003, cannot talk about her settlement with Trump University, but her recently released deposition speaks volumes on what she went through.
“I was fired because I was in the military,” she said in the deposition given to lawyers in a separate fraud case against the university. “At the end of my [performance] evaluation, they wrote that it was a problem that I was in the military,” she wrote, adding that her reservist duty for the military amounted to two days a month. She took those days off in the middle of the week so she could work on the weekends as an event planner for the university.
The deposition said that Trump University cites “poor performance” as the basis of Sommer’s termination, though she claims her supervisors were pushing her to put in more hours. When she refused, they fired her.
They even called her a “weekend warrior” in her evaluation — a term she found extremely “derogatory.”
The university appeared to be oblivious of the fact that reprimanding an employee for absences caused by military service is a violation of federal law. In her employment lawsuit, Sommer accused the Trump-owned institution of firing her over her reservist duties and her age.
The university settled with her instead of going to trial.
“They found that there was probable cause enough to settle,” the vet said.
Moreover, it seems Sommer is not the only veteran to be terminated by the Trump University. Air Force Senior Master Sgt. Richard Wright also lost his position as a mentor at the Trump Institute, an affiliate of Trump University, after returning from deployment to Afghanistan, according to the Huffington Post.
His bosses told him “all of your absences” had forced them to “reevaluate your position with the Trump Institute.”
Banner/Thumbnail Credits: Reuters