Maine Republican U.S. Sen. Susan Collins on Monday denounced Donald Trump’s comments about  a Latino judge presiding over a lawsuit against Trump University.

“Donald Trump’s comments on the ethnic heritage and religion of judges are absolutely unacceptable,” Collins wrote in a news statement. “His statement that Judge (Gonzalo) Curiel could not rule fairly because of his Mexican heritage does not represent our American values. Mr. Trump’s comments demonstrate both a lack of respect for the judicial system and the principle of separation of powers.”

Other prominent Republican leaders have pushed back against Trump’s attacks on Curiel.

In early May, Collins said she could endorse Trump for president if stopped the “gratuitous personal insults” and “bizarre” behavior.

Trump University is the target of two lawsuits in San Diego and one in New York that accuse the business of fleecing students with unfulfilled promises to teach secrets of success in real estate. Trump has maintained that customers were overwhelmingly satisfied. Trump’s legal team has not sought to have Curiel removed.

Trump already has rejected calls for him adjust his approach.

“I’m not changing,” he said Tuesday at a fiery news conference at Trump Tower.

On Sunday, Trump doubled down on the idea. Asked on CBS whether a Muslim judge would be unfair given Trump’s plan to ban Muslims from the U.S, Trump responded: “Yeah. That would be possible, absolutely.”

Information from The Associated Press has been used in this report.


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