When Donald Trump announced his candidacy for President last year, it seemed unlikely that he would get very far. Nate Silver, the election guru who correctly called almost all states in the 2008 and 2012 elections, put Trump’s odds at less than 5%, and publications from The Atlantic to The Guardian assured their readers that a Trump candidacy was a just a fundamentalist pipe dream.
But to the shock and dismay of many, Trump has risen through the ranks of Republican contenders and is now only one race away from becoming the President of the United States.
To do it, he’s tapped into a powerful stream of anti-immigrant sentiment that has flourished throughout the Obama Administration. In his speeches, Trump has exploited popular fears of Muslims, Hispanics, Jews, and African Americans—a tactic that has proven to be very successful. Even though Trump has no political experience whatsoever, he has been able to ride the coattails of prejudice and bigotry all the way to the White House.
Although Trump has flip-flopped on many issues throughout his campaign, his ability to offend members of the immigrant community have remained remarkably consistent. And it hasn’t gone unnoticed: according to recent poll numbers, Trump holds only 14% of the Latino vote, compared to Hillary Clinton’s 76%.
With the general election in full swing, here are just a few of Trump’s most absurd and dangerous anti-immigrant remarks—which double as 6 great reasons to get out and vote this November.
He referred to Mexicans as “criminals” and “rapists”.
Trump kicked things off to a racist start with his very first speech as a Presidential candidate. Right after announcing his candidacy, Trump proceeded to state, “When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending you their best…They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with them. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.” Trump was asked to clarify his comments on CNN’s State of the Union, but he did not make things better. Instead of offering an apology, Trump called Mexicans “killers”, as well.
He claimed that the Mexican government purposefully sends its criminals to the U.S.
In an interview with Fox News’ Chris Wallace, Trump was asked to respond to his claims that the Mexican government is purposefully sending undocumented criminals over the U.S. border. Trump characteristically refused to apologize, instead insisting, “The Mexican government is much smarter, much more cunning. And they send the bad ones over because they don’t want to pay for them. They don’t want to take care of them.”
He mocked Jeb Bush for being married to a Mexican woman.
In July, Twitter user Rob Heilbron tweeted, “Jeb Bush has to like Mexican Illegals because of his wife,” referring to Bush’s Mexican-born wife, Columbia. Trump retweeted the insulting comment, though he deleted it later in the wake of criticism. Two months later, he retweeted the post “Jeb Bush is crazy, who cares that he speaks Mexican, this is America, English !!” and added “so true”.
He called Trump fans that beat a Hispanic man “passionate”.
In August 2015, two men attacked a 58-year old Hispanic homeless man in Boston, breaking his nose and urinating on him. They told the police that they targeted the man because of his ethnicity, allegedly stating, “Donald Trump was right, all these illegals need to be deported.” Instead of denouncing the attack, Trump stated, “It would be a shame…I will say that people who are following me are very passionate. They love this country and they want this country to be great again. They are passionate.”
He kicked an award-winning Hispanic journalist out of a press conference.
During a press conference in Iowa, award-winning Hispanic journalist Jorge Ramos attempted to ask Trump questions about his immigration stance. Trump accused Ramos of speaking out of turn, and called security to physically remove him from the room. As he was being ejected from the conference, Trump told Ramos, “Go back to Univision.” Shortly afterwards a Trump supporter confronted Ramos, a U.S. citizen, and said, “You were very rude. It’s not about you. Get out of my country.”
He called for a “total and complete shutdown” of Muslims entering the U.S.
In the wake of the San Bernardino, California, shootings in December 2015, Trump released an official campaign statement that called for a “total and complete shutdown” of Muslims entering the country “until our country’s representatives can figure out what’s going on.” He went on to say that Muslims “have great hatred towards Americans” and “where this hatred comes from and why we will have to determine.”
Immigration Lawyer in Greensboro NC
Though many may have hoped that Trump would adopt a more politically correct attitude as his candidacy progressed, it appears that he was only getting started. Since making the above comments, Trump has gone on to make even more hateful statements about Muslims, Hispanics, African Americans, women, and Jewish people, and there seems to be no end to his bigotry and ignorance towards people of all races.
It is clear that anyone who wants to make this country truly great again—meaning diverse, welcoming, and inclusive—should make it a top priority to get out and vote this November. If you do not yet have the right to vote in the U.S., contact a Greensboro Immigration Lawyer today to learn how you can let your voice be heard.