Immigration News Today: NBC Universal Severs Ties with Donald Trump After Nearly 40 Latino Groups Speak Out
UPDATE 2:20 p.m.: NBCUniversal announced it will end its business relationship with Trump.
In a statement early Monday afternoon, the statement read, "At NBC, respect and dignity for all people are cornerstones of our values. Due to the recent derogatory statements by Donald Trump regarding immigrants, NBCUniversal is ending its business relationship with Mr. Trump. To that end, the annual Miss USA and Miss Universe Pageants, which are part of a joint venture between NBC and Trump, will no longer air on NBC."
"In addition, as Mr. Trump has already indicated, he will not be participating in 'The Apprentice' on NBC. Celebrity Apprentice is licensed from Mark Burnett's United Artists Media Group and that relationship will continue."
A coalition comprising of dozens of Latino organizations have called for NBCUniversal to end its business relationship with Donald Trump, a Republican Party presidential candidate.
The National Hispanic Leadership Agenda (NHLA), which includes 39 Latino advocacy organizations, applauded Univision Communication's entertainment division for ending its business partnership, which included the Miss Universe Organization -- partly owned by Trump. Univision ceased the partnership after Trump made comments targeting Mexicans and undocumented immigrants during his presidential bid announcement on June 16.
"They (Mexico) are not our friend, believe me," said Trump, who went off script from his original script. He later added, "The U.S. has become a dumping ground for everybody else's problems. ... When Mexico sends its people, they are not sending their best. They are not sending you. They are sending people that have lots of problems, and they are bringing those problems to us. They are bringing drugs and they are bringing crime, and they're rapists."
He continued, "Some, I assume, are good people. But I speak to border guards and they tell us what we are getting. They are not sending us the right people. It's coming all over South and Latin America, and it's coming probably from the Middle East, but we don't know because we have no protection and we have no competence. We don't know what is happening and it has got to stop and it has to stop fast."
The NHLA said Trump's comments were "repugnant" and wants NBCUniversal to follow Univision's lead as NBC also airs the Miss USA pageant and "The Celebrity Apprentice."
"Aspirants to the highest office in the land must not use a national electoral platform to spew venomous speech about Mexican immigrants and Mexican-Americans," said NHLA Chair Hector Sanchez, who also serves as executive director of the Labor Council for Latin American Advancement. "As a Mexican immigrant to this country, I can personally attest to the falsity of Donald Trump's statements."
National Hispanic Media Coalition President and CEO Alex Nogales said Trump's statements "will forever mark him as the arrogant bigot that he is" and that the U.S. deserves better from its presidential candidates.
"Univision Communications' courageous action to sever ties with both the Miss USA and Miss Universe Pageants...is civil rights leadership in the digital age," said National Hispanic Foundation for the Arts Chairman and Co-founder Felix Sanchez. "We implore NBCU to follow Univision's lead and take a similar stance and sever their financial relationship with Mr. Trump, in light of the bigoted way he has denigrated Mexicans and Mexican-Americans."
Coincidentally, the current Miss USA, Nia Sanchez, is of Mexican descent.
The NHLA also includes the Hispanic Federation, Hispanic National Bar Association, League of United Latin American Citizens, National Council of La Raza, National Institute for Latino Policy and United States-Mexico Chamber of Commerce.
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