- The Washington Times - Wednesday, December 16, 2015

He held his own in Tuesday’s Republican debate but GOP front-runner Donald Trump was the clear loser after Britain’s top court ruled Wednesday an 11-turbine wind farm can be built near his pricey luxury golf course on the coast of Scotland.

The unanimous UK Supreme Court decision capped a bitter legal battle between the Trump Organization and the government of Scotland over the proposed energy-generating wind farm, a $350 million project located just two miles offshore from the Trump golf project north of Aberdeen. The Trump Organization argued the wind farm would hurt the value of its investment by marring the ocean views from the resort.

An Edinburgh appeals court this summer rejected Mr. Trump’s legal challenge to the process by which the Scottish government approved the wind farm, a decision upheld by the Supreme Court Wednesday.

The battle has sparked an angry war of words between the Trump Organization and Alex Salmond, the former first minister of Scotland who had previously backed Mr. Trump’s Scottish investments but was a strong supporter of the wind farm. Mr.Salmond and other critics say Mr. Trump’s resorts have not generated the jobs and other economic spin-offs the developer had originally promised.

Mr. Salmond, now the foreign policy spokesman for the nationalist Scottish National Party, dismissed Mr. Trump as “three times a loser” in trying to block the project, taking a swipe at the developer’s political aspirations in the process.

“His behavior and comments are unlikely to attract the votes of many Mexican-Americans or Muslim-Americans,” Mr.Salmond said in a statement reported by the Reuters news agency. “Given his treatment of Scotland, Scots-Americans are likely to join the ever-growing list of people alienated by Trump.”

The Trump Organization, which once enjoyed warm relations with the Scottish government as its billionaire owner poured huge sums of money into his investment projects there, on Wednesday condemned the government for pushing the wind farm project, arguing the turbines would harm “the bucolic Aberdeen Bay” and damage the country’s critical tourism industry.

“History will judge those involved unfavorably and the outcome demonstrates the foolish, small-minded and parochial mentality which dominates the current Scottish government’s dangerous experiment with wind energy,” Trump Organization Executive Vice President George Sorial said in a statement, adding, “We will continue to fight this proposal on every possible front.”

Although his mother was born in Scotland, it was a rough day all around for Mr. Trump in his ancestral homeland.

His call for a temporary ban on Muslim immigration to the United States in the wake of a string of terror attacks has been slammed by parties across the spectrum in Britain. Conservative Prime Minister David Cameron has been an especially sharp critic.

Asked about a petition circulating to ban Mr. Trump from traveling to the UK, Mr. Cameron told MPs Wednesday, “I think his remarks are divisive, stupid and wrong, and I think if he came to visit our country, he would unite us all against him.”

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