Donald Trump wanted to fire female employees he considered unattractive and replace them with better-looking women at a golf resort he owned, according to court documents from a 2012 lawsuit.
As reported by the Los Angeles Times, the court documents detail a lawsuit that alleges Trump pressured employees at the Trump National Golf Club in Rancho Palos to replace those he viewed to be unattractive female employees over a number of years in the 2000s.
The report comes as Trump has faced renewed criticism that he disrespects women, a narrative fueled by his controversial remarks about a former Miss Universe that he worked with when he owned the beauty pageant. Hillary Clinton raised in Monday’s debate the fact that he called Alicia Machado “Miss Piggy” and “Miss Housekeeping” after she won his 1996 Miss Universe pageant.
Hayley Strozier, an employee at the golf club until 2008, alleged in a sworn declaration she “had witnessed Donald Trump tell managers many times while he was visiting the club that restaurant hostesses were ‘not pretty enough’ and that they should be fired and replaced with more attractive women.”
According to the LA Times report, the employees said in their lawsuit that they rotated employees schedules “so that the most attractive women were scheduled to work when Mr. Trump was scheduled to be at the club.”
Reached for comment by the Times, a Trump Organization reportedly called the allegations “meritless.”
The Trump campaign did not immediately respond to a CNN request for comment.
In the lawsuit, employees claim that Trump’s stated preferences regarding female employees caused managers to value appearance over skill when making hiring and staffing decisions. They also allege that Trump himself made inappropriate and unprofessional comments toward female employees.
The LA Times described the case as a “broad labor relations lawsuit” that is “focused on the course’s high-pressure work culture” in addition to spotlighting the revelations about Trump’s.