WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Republican Donald Trump on Wednesday pushed back against a lawyer he had berated when she requested a break to pump breast milk for her then-infant daughter, the latest controversial remark to emerge in his presidential campaign.
Trump did not deny getting angry and calling the woman “disgusting” in 2011 but lashed back after reports of the incident emerged late on Tuesday.
Miami-based lawyer Elizabeth Beck was questioning the wealthy developer and television personality in a Florida real estate case when she asked for the break, according to court testimony first reported by the New York Times.
Trump abruptly ended the deposition and questioned his own lawyer’s request for a bathroom break, according to the testimony.
“She wanted to breast pump in front of me at dep(osition),” Trump said on Twitter on Wednesday. Beck told Reuters that was untrue.
“I’m exasperated now because he’s telling falsehoods,” she said.
Trump, known for his brash style, has come under fire for his comments on Mexican immigrants, veterans and other Republican presidential candidates even as he climbs in opinion polls.
The latest flare-up came after a top adviser to Trump apologized on Tuesday for making “inarticulate” comments on the subject of marital rape that also generated controversy.
On CNN earlier on Wednesday, Beck said, “He got up, his face got red, he shook his finger at me and he screamed, ‘You’re disgusting, you’re disgusting,’ and he ran out of there.”
Afterward, Trump fired back on Twitter: “So many people who know nothing about me are commenting all over T.V. and the media as though they have great D.J.T. insight. Know NOTHING!”
But Beck defended her remarks and said she had witnessed his behavior during numerous in-person interactions with the mogul over several years.
“I know what I saw,” she said. “You know how they behave in certain circumstances.”
Trump lawyer Alan Garten told the Times he thought Beck’s request was a bid to buy time, but his comments did not reflect a position on breast-feeding.
Beck, whose firm is still involved in litigation with Trump, rejected that argument and said Trump later flew to her law office in Miami to finish the deposition.
The Times also cited depositions for several lawsuits since 2007 that it said showed the candidate’s raw edge and his tendency to exaggerate business deals.
Trump representatives did not return a phone call seeking comment.
Writing by Susan Heavey; Editing by Jonathan Oatis