NEW YORK - Things got even uglier Thursday in the bitter war of words between Donald Trump and Rosie O'Donnell. The Donald called the Los Angeles-based morning show "Good Day L.A." to sound off on O'Donnell's remarks about his near-firing of Miss USA Tara Conner.
"Maybe she wanted to put the crown back on Miss USA's head," the real-estate mogul said of the openly gay O'Donnell, who has four children with her partner, Kelli. "I think she's very attracted to Miss USA so she probably wanted to put the crown on her head herself."
Insult No. 2: "She is a very, very unattractive woman who really is a bully."
Insult No. 3: "Ultimately, Rosie is a loser, and ultimately ("The View") will fail because of Rosie. ... Barbara (Walters) made a mistake and let me tell you something, Barbara's a good friend of mine. She cannot stand Rosie O'Donnell."
It all started when O'Donnell, co-host of the ABC morning talk show "The View," blasted Trump on Wednesday's show.
She said Trump's news conference with Conner, whose title was in jeopardy because of underage drinking, had annoyed her "on a multitude of levels" and that the twice-divorced Donald had no right to be a "moral compass" for the beauty queen.
"He inherited a lot of money," she said. "Wait a minute, and he's been bankrupt so many times where he didn't have to pay. ... I just think that this man is sort of like one of those, you know, snake oil salesmen in 'Little House on the Prairie.'"
Trump fired back later Wednesday in a TV interview, calling O'Donnell a "slob," among other insults. "I never went bankrupt, but she said I went bankrupt. So probably I'll sue her because it would be fun.
An amused O'Donnell talked about Trump's comments with her co-hosts on Thursday's edition of "The View."
"Wasn't that a fun night of viewing? ... Look who's here today: Kelli. I was afraid to leave her home in case somebody with a comb-over came and stole her from me," she said.
In an entry posted Wednesday night on her Web site, O'Donnell duplicated an excerpt on Trump's rocky financial history from his biography on the online encyclopedia Wikipedia, which is written by users. She wrote: "i will let you know if the donald sues me/or if kelli leaves me for one of his pals/don't u find him charming."
Walters, who created the "The View," and executive producer Bill Geddie are standing by O'Donnell - and Trump.
"Both Rosie and Donald are high-spirited, opinionated people. Donald has been a friend of `The View' for many years and Rosie, of course, is our enormously popular moderator. We cherish them both and hope the new year brings calm and peace," they said Wednesday in a statement.
Trump, owner of the Miss Universe Organization, which includes Miss USA and Miss Teen USA, said Tuesday at a news conference that he would allow Conner to keep her title if she settled down and entered alcohol rehab.
Conner tearfully admitted drinking as a minor at New York nightclubs. She turned 21 a day before the news conference.