Univision, the largest Spanish-language network in the United States, has announced it is severing all business ties with Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump.
“At Univision we see first-hand the work ethic, love for family, strong religious values and the important role Mexican immigrants and Mexican-Americans have had and will continue to have in building the future of our country,” the network said in a bilingual statement.
“We will not be airing the Miss USA pageant on July 12th or working on any other projects tied to the Trump Organization.”
Trump owns the Miss Universe Organization, which produces the Miss USA pageant.
During his Presidential announcement last week, Trump accused Mexico of not sending “the right people” to the United States, and that immigrants from Mexico are “rapists” who are “bringing drugs, and bringing crime.”
The comments have caused a national outcry from the Latino and immigrant communities alike.
In a scathing editorial, Univision anchor Jorge Ramos, a famed figure within the Spanish-speaking community for decades, slammed Trump for financially profiting off the same immigrants he’s insulting:
[I]mmigrants from Mexico not only harvest the food that Trump eats, they have helped build his hotels and apartment buildings in the U.S. They contribute to his net worth, which he says is about $8 billion. Like millions of other Americans, Trump profits greatly from the labor of Mexicans. Yet he feels it necessary to attack them.
I have visited Trump’s National Doral Miami Hotel and the Trump International Hotel and Tower in New York in recent months. Many of the wonderful workers who took care of me at these establishments were, indeed, from Mexico. So why does Trump speak so hatefully about them?
Trump’s claims also earned a swift rebuke from the Mexican government, with an official dismissing Trump’s rhetoric as “prejudiced and absurd”:
“[Trump] surely doesn’t know the contributions made by migrants from practically every nation in the world, who have supported the development of the United States.”
Further reactions from Latino organizations have been resounding. Earlier this week, organizers from the Miss Mexico pageant announced they may pull out of the Miss Universe contest in response to Trump’s claims.
Additionally, actress Roselyn Sanchez and singer J. Balvin announced they would be withdrawing from their scheduled appearances at the Miss USA pageant.
The move from Univision could have huge repercussions for Republicans as they struggle to repair their image among Latinos and immigrants going into the 2016 Presidential election.
The network reaches nearly 10 million people, and for two years in a row has beat out primetime English-language networks among viewers.
Ramos’s fellow Univision news anchor, Emmy-winning journalist Maria Elena Salinas, also rebuked Trump on Twitter, saying “no room for racist comments.”
As George Bush’s own advisor once said, losing the confidence of Jorge Ramos — widely considered the “Latino Walter Cronkite” — is akin to losing the Latino community in its entirety:
Mr. Ramos is “not only a journalist, he’s become the voice of the Latino constituency,” Mr. Dowd said. “And that’s where Republicans have to worry — you don’t want to lose Jorge Ramos.”