Trump 2020 advisory board member Steve Cortes engaged with CNN anchor Chris Cuomo in hotly contested debate about immigration and Hispanic support for President Donald Trump.
Appearing on Tuesday night’s edition of “Cuomo Prime Time,” Cortez – famously called out by the president as looking “more like a WASP than I do” at Monday night’s New Mexico rally – argued that the real bigotry lies with those who try to make the “border into a racial issue when it’s not.”
“You are assuming that there is no basic question of dignity involved, that all it is about their pocketbook,” Cuomo told Cortes.
“Sure we care about our pocketbooks, me, you, of course. But, when you are a member of a group that has been denigrated time and time again, this man who described the caravans coming here as being mostly murderers and rapists and some I assume are good people and all this stuff about the s-hole countries and what he said Puerto Rico and treating them like they weren’t even part of the country. You know it’s reflected in his numbers. He’s got a third of them at best. How do you think you get to a majority?”
Cortes responded by noting that a third of Hispanic support “is incredible compared to expectations.”
The two went back and forth about whether Trump’s comments are bigoted before Cortes inserted his definition:
Do you know what is bigoted in my opinion? What is bigoted is saying we’re going to turn the border into a racial issue when it’s not, all right, because America is not a race. And so by protecting America you are protecting Americans of every color, whether they are brown, or black or purple. So what has the media done on a consistent basis? It’s tried to make his tough border policies inherently or somehow systematically racist.
Cuomo accused Cortes, Trump, and immigration hawks of only talking about a small “slice” of immigrants rather than focusing on the majority who are law-abiding. (RELATED: Tucker Asked Jorge Ramos How Many Caravan Migrants He Planned To Take In — Things Got Awkward Fast)
“All of them, if they’re coming illegally, all of them are committing a crime, and all of them are unwelcome when they trespass in our country. We know that. Some of them in addition are very dangerous,” Cortes responded before noting that most actually “wreak havoc upon Hispanic Americans” who are “the people who suffer the most from illegal immigration, from the ravages of illegal immigration, from the unfair wage market competition, from the very preventable crime of illegal aliens … “