Trump Threatens Miami GOP Donor With Lawsuit Over Full-Page Ads Bashing Him
If you opened the Miami Herald yesterday, you might have noticed a giant full-page ad blasting Donald Trump as a “narcissistic BULLYionaire" and comparing him to Hitler. The ad was paid for by Mike Fernandez, a Miami-based healthcare magnate and billionaire in his own right. Fernandez is also one of the largest individual donors to Jeb Bush's campaign (though he says he didn't coordinate the ad buy with the Bush camp). Fernandez, interestingly, has also once gotten in a scuffle with Rick Scott's staff during last year's gubernatorial election.
Well, Trump got wind of it and threatened legal action for any "false, misleading, defamatory, inaccurate or otherwise tortious statements and representations concerning Mr. Trump, his businesses or his brand." Because, you know, Trump himself certainly has never said anything false, misleading, defamatory or otherwise tortious about anyone or anything himself.
The full-color ad started comparing a rather eloquent quote from Abraham Lincoln next to Trump declaring, "I mean, part of the beauty of me is that I'm very rich."
"History reminds us that when governments promise enticing favors, and fail to deliver, the people lose confidence," reads the ad. "They become scared and seek out strong — frequently despotic — leaders. We saw this in the great depression and many other moments in history. Look at Hitler in Germany, Mussolini in Italy and Peron in Argentina. When people lose hope, they are susceptible to those who offer to think for them."
The ad then implores Republican voters to be wary of Trump, the "insecure, narcissistic BULLYionaire with a hunger to be adored."
Fernandez reminds the readers how much he loves America. Which we don't doubt. He's the guy who tried to get the world's largest American flag installed in downtown Miami.
Fernandez, who has contributed $3 million to Bush's SuperPAC, also plans to run versions of the ad in Las Vegas and Des Moines, Iowa.
Trump's people got word of the ad, and on December 4 sent a letter to Fernandez threatening legal action, according to Politico.
“Though we believe your decision is fool hearted [sic], please be advised that in the event your ads contain any false, misleading, defamatory, inaccurate or otherwise tortious statements or representations concerning Mr. Trump, his business or his brand,” Trump's general counsel Alan Garten wrote, “we will not hesitate to seek immediate legal action to prevent such distribution and hold you jointly and severally liable to the fullest extent of the law for any damages resulting therefrom ... and will look forward to doing it.”
Fernandez replied by posting the letter on his Facebook page.
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"Only in America can an immigrant scare a #bullyionaire," wrote Fernandez, who immigrated from Cuba as a child in 1964.
A big-time Republican donor, Fernandez isn't afraid to publicly chide campaigns for using anti-Hispanic tactics.
He quite publicly quit Rick Scott's 2014 campaign in part after two staffers made anti-Mexican jokes. He had been the campaign's finance co-chair.