Donald Trump is running for president. Will he win the Republican nomination? Certainly not. Trump’s presidential campaign is a mere publicity stunt, not unlike the clowns who ran in Mexico’s recent June 7th election, or the fake Brazilian candidates who put their names on ballot last fall. Yet while this clown is bound to give us lots of laughs, he’s also injecting misinformation into the 2016 Republican primary field, flubbing the facts on everything from the U.S. economy to immigration. His announcement was particularly hateful towards Mexicans and Mexican-Americans. Mexicans in New York and Latinos around the country were shocked and turned his vitriol into ammunition against the Republican Party.
“Part of the reason why Latinos are so alienated from the Republican party these days is there’s a sense that there are people who actually believe [what Trump said],” Lisa Navarrete, a spokeswoman for the National Council of La Raza, told The Guardian.
We want you to laugh, or we wouldn’t even cover Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign. But we’ll also do our best to point out when Trump’s statements aren’t just laughable, but not factual. If you want to read the full transcript of his rambling and barely-prepared remarks, they’re here. If you have a life, and are just looking for the highlights and a little context from Donald Trump’s presidential announcement, look below for 6 quotes from America’s accidental political clown, with the occasional fact-check and link to real information relevant to the discussions in the 2016 presidential race.
1) "When Mexico sends its people, they're not sending the best. They're not sending you, they're sending people that have lots of problems and they're bringing those problems."
Nevermind that Trump is a wrong about the character and work ethic of the vast majority of Mexican blue-collar workers, or that he exploited many undocumented immigrants that have cleaned his hotels. Nevermind that it’s Latino entrepreneurs who fuel small business and job growth in the U.S. (It’s certainly not moguls like Trump, whose Macy’s clothing line was completely outsourced to China.) Mexico actually does send its best people to the U.S., if you count their top scientists, business people and athletes.
2) "[Mexican immigrants] are bringing drugs, they're bringing crime. They're rapists and some, I assume, are good people, but I speak to border guards and they're telling us what we're getting."
Whoa. We’d love to debunk this, but honestly it’s hard to find accurate statistics about rape victims, let alone ethnicity, let alone immigrant origin. We do know that Latino are disproportionately victims of crimes like murders. Of course, Trump’s racism made American fascists croon. Here’s right-wing radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh.
“[Trump’s immigration message] resonated. That's gonna resonate. There's a whole bunch of people, just like Perot resented [sic].”
Ya, resented. That’s about right, even if it’s not.
3) “I would build a great wall, and nobody builds walls better than me, believe me, and I’ll build them very inexpensively, I will build a great, great wall on our southern border. And I will have Mexico pay for that wall.”
Trump isn’t the only Republican candidate who’s excited about building a wall on the southern border. So let’s just take a moment to remind everyone that 40 percent of America’s 11 million undocumented immigrants came to the U.S. with legitimate visas (including practically all of those immigrants from South America and the Middle East, mentioned in the next quote).
4) “It’s coming from more than Mexico. It’s coming from all over South and Latin America, and it’s coming probably — 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’s happening.”
Actually, we do know what’s happening. Few immigrants come to the U.S. from South America. Just like those who come from the Middle East, most come to the U.S. on tourist, student, and other visas. When it comes to illegal immigration, everyone knows what’s happening, or at least has a vague idea thanks to the annual ICE immigration statistics (under the “removals by citizenship tab).
5) "You have to get hit by a tractor, literally a tractor, to use [Obamacare], because the deductibles are so high it's virtually useless. It is a disaster."
Since Obamacare doesn’t establish one insurance plan, but rather a marketplace, it idea of “it” being a single thing is absurd. Deductibles in plans through the government marketplace range from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars per year.
6) "I'm using my own money. I'm not using lobbyists. I'm not using donors. I don't care. I'm really rich."
Great, only Trump money will be wasted in this campaign boondoggle. He went on to claim that he’s worth 8 billion dollars. Forbes says he only has 4 billion. But who’s counting?
Many have moved to take a hit at his net worth and boycott Donald Trump’s clothing line and his eponymous hotels, which are located in the following cities. Just sayin...
New York City
Rio de Janeiro