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Anchored by Jake Tapper, The Lead airs at 4 p.m. ET on CNN.

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May 13th, 2014
05:40 PM ET

PR expert turned down meeting with Sterling because 'he's beyond salvation'

(CNN) – There were times when Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling expressed contrition, and even teared up during his exclusive interview CNN's Anderson Cooper. Though whether it was for his racial comments, or misjudging his alleged mistress, that's hard to say.

Sterling's ostensible apology also included an attack on his interviewer.

"I think you have more of a plantation mentality than I do. And I think you're more of a racist than I am," Sterling told Cooper.

When asked how so, Sterling went for the "I know you are, but what am I" defense.

"Because I'm not a racist, and I've never been a racist, and I'll never be a racist," he said.

At least when it came to remarks to his alleged mistress on that tape, he did call his words "terrible" and "ugly," and said he didn't really believe them.

But after giving an interview like that, is there anything that could win Donald Sterling any part of the public opinion back?

Public relations specialist Howard Bragman – who represents Magic Johnson's wife and son – said someone close to Sterling called him, asking him to meet with the Clipers owner.

Bragman declined, saying "he's not going to listen" and "he's beyond salvation."

His strongest advice for Sterling now is to "shut up."

"Nobody wants to hear from you, it's not going to change the outcome, nobody's going to be sympathetic," says Bragman, founder of Reputation.com.

For more of our interview with Howard Bragman, check out the video above.

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