Lawyers seek 'Apprentice' tapes in Trump immigration suit

BOSTON (AP) — Lawyers suing President Donald Trump over his decision to end special protections shielding certain immigrants from deportation are seeking unaired footage from his reality TV show "The Apprentice" to try to bolster their case alleging the move was racially motivated, the attorneys said Wednesday.

Lawyers for Civil Rights, which sued Trump in February, has issued subpoenas to MGM Holdings Inc. and Trump Productions LLC demanding any footage shot during the production of the show in which Trump "uses racial and/or ethnic slurs" or "makes remarks concerning race, nationality and/or ethnic background."

Former White House staffer and fellow reality-TV star Omarosa Manigault Newman claimed without evidence in a book released in August, "Unhinged," that a tape exists of the president using the N-word on the reality show's set.

Trump has denied the existence of such tapes, tweeting that the show's producer told him "there are NO TAPES of the Apprentice where I used such a terrible and disgusting word as attributed by Wacky and Deranged Omarosa."

"I don't have that word in my vocabulary, and never have," Trump said.

The case filed in Boston's federal court centers on the Trump administration's decision to end temporary protected status for thousands of immigrants from Haiti, El Salvador and Honduras. Temporary protected status provides safe havens for people from countries experiencing armed conflicts, natural disasters and other challenges.

Lawyers for Civil Rights says in the lawsuit that Trump's move to rescind the program was rooted in animus against immigrants of color, citing comments he made on the campaign trial and in office.

"Access to these videotapes will help further demonstrate that Defendant Trump holds racially biased views that impact his policy and decision making," attorney Oren Nimni said. The subpoenas also seek any relevant outtakes, audio clips and transcripts made during production of the show.

An MGM lawyer and White House officials didn't immediately respond to an email requesting comment.

A federal judge in July denied Trump's request to throw out the lawsuit and rejected the administration's bid to remove Trump as a defendant in the case.

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Donald Trump with 'The Apprentice' creator Mark Burnett
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Donald Trump with 'The Apprentice' creator Mark Burnett
Donald Trump and Mark Burnett during NBC 2003-2004 Upfront at The Metropolitan Opera House lincoln Center in New York City, New York USA. (Photo by Jim Spellman/WireImage)
New York real estate mogul Donald Trump (L) and TV producer Mark Burnett talk to reporters, April 8, 2003 in New York City. Burnett is producing a new reality TV show for NBC called, 'The Apprentice,' where the winner will win a six-figure apprenticeship within the Trump Organization. (Photo by Jeff Christensen/WireImage)
Donald Trump, Clive Davis and Mark Burnett during Wyclef Jean Listening Party for His New Album 'The Preachers Son' at Hudson Theater in New York City, New York, United States. (Photo by L. Busacca/WireImage)
LOS ANGELES - JULY 10: Executive Producers of 'The Apprentice' Donald Trump (L) and Mark Burnett speak with the press at the 2004 TCA Summer Press Tour at the Century Plaza Hotel on June 10, 2004 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Frederick M. Brown)
LOS ANGELES - JULY 10: (L to R) Executive Producers Donald Trump, Mark Burnett, Vice Presidents of the Trump Organization George H. Ross and Carolyn Kepcher of 'The Apprentice' speak with the press at the 2004 TCA Summer Press Tour at the Century Plaza Hotel on June 10, 2004 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES - SEPTEMBER 19: Producers Mark Burnett and Donald Trump attend the 56th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards on September 19, 2004 at the Shrine Auditorium, in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Roma Downey, Mark Burnett, Donald Trump and Melania Knauss with guests (Photo by Jon Kopaloff/FilmMagic)
Donald Trump, Billy Bush and Mark Burnett (Photo by Mark Sullivan/WireImage)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - SEPTEMBER 20: (L-R) Creator/Executive Producer Mark Burnett, Mr. Trump's fiancee Melania Knauss, and businessman Donald Trump attend the Museum of Television and Radio presents 'The Apprentice' at the Museum of Television and Radio on September 20, 2004 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Stephen Shugerman/Getty Images)
Group portrait of, from left, American boxing promoter Don King, businessman Donald Trump, and television producer Mark Burnett as they pose together at the Mar-a-Lago estate, Palm Beach, Florida, 2005. (Photo by Davidoff Studios/Getty Images)
Donald Trump and Mark Burnett during 'The Apprentice' Finale- Arrivals at California Mart in Los Angeles, California, United States. (Photo by Jon Kopaloff/FilmMagic)
Donald Trump and Mark Burnett during Donald Trump Recruiting Search for the Next 'Apprentice' at Universal Studios Hollywood at Universal Studios in Los Angeles, California, United States. (Photo by L. Cohen/WireImage)
Donald Trump and Mark Burnett during Donald Trump Honored With a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6801 Hollywood Blvd. in front of Hollywood and Highland in Hollywood, California, United States. (Photo by M. Tran/FilmMagic)
NEW YORK - SEPTEMBER 13: (L-R) Moderator Erin Burnett, Donald Trump Jr., Donald Trump, producer Mark Burnett and Ivanka Trump attend the Paley Center for Media's presentation of 'The Apprentice' on September 13, 2010 in New York City. (Photo by Steven A Henry/WireImage)
Donald Trump and Mark Burnett (Photo by Mathew Imaging/FilmMagic)
TODAY -- Pictured: (l-r) Mark Burnett and Donald Trump appear on NBC News' 'Today' show -- Photo by: Peter Kramer/NBC/NBC NewsWire
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In a different case in California, another federal judge last month issued a temporary injunction that bars the Trump administration from ending the protections, saying there is evidence that president "harbors an animus against non-white, non-European aliens which influenced his ... decision to end the TPS designation

The Trump administration is appealing that ruling.

Pressure on producers of the "The Apprentice" to release unaired footage of the show intensified during the 2016 presidential campaign after The Washington Post published a 2005 "Access Hollywood" recording of Trump boasting about aggressively groping women.

MGM, which owns "The Apprentice," said at the time that it couldn't unilaterally release any unaired, archived material because of contractual obligations. The show's producer, Mark Burnett, also said he didn't have the ability or right to release footage.

A former contestant on "The Apprentice" who has accused Trump of unwanted groping and kissing has also sought footage through a lawsuit against the president, but it's unclear whether she has received any.

The subpoena issued by Summer Zervos' attorney in May sought any "Apprentice" material that features Zervos, or Trump talking about her or discussing other female contestants in a sexual or inappropriate way.

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Follow Alanna Durkin Richer on Twitter at http://twitter.com/aedurkinricher.

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