Trump Immigration Speech Doesn’t Go So Well



Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump delivered a much-anticipated speech in Phoenix Wednesday night that was intended to clarify his immigration reform policies. Trump’s did clear up some confusion about his immigration proposals…and that’s about the best thing we can say about his big speech.

Here’s a rundown of the highlights lowlights of Trump’s speech, per the Washington Post:

He declared that he will build a “Great Wall.” (“On day one, we will begin working on an impenetrable, physical, tall, powerful, beautiful southern border wall.”)

He insisted “Mexico will pay” for it: “One-hundred percent. They don’t know it yet, but they’re going to pay for the wall.”

He suggested that he’d like to deport his opponent. “Maybe they’ll be able to deport her.”

He said Dwight Eisenhower’s “Operation Wetback” did not go far enough. (He name-checked Ike but did not say what the strategy was called.)

He reiterated that he will indeed create “a deportation task force” and promised to deport two million “criminal aliens” starting on “day one.” 

He said undocumented immigrants seeking legal status would first have to leave the country and try to return lawfully. “There will be no amnesty,” he said. “You cannot obtain legal status or become a citizen of the United States by illegally entering our country. Can’t do it. … Anyone who has entered the United States illegally is subject to deportation.” He did not use the term “self-deportation,” but that’s exactly what he called for: “You can call it ‘deport’ if you want. The press doesn’t like that term. You can call it whatever the hell you want.”

He claimed “countless Americans” are “victims of violence” by illegal immigrants who are “dangerous, dangerous, dangerous criminals”: “We will issue detainers for illegal immigrants arrested for any crime whatsoever.”

He said government has “no idea” how many undocumented immigrants are on U.S. soil: “It could be 30 million.”

“We’re like the big bully that keeps getting beat up,” Trump explained. “We also have to be honest about the fact that not everyone who seeks to join our country will be able to successfully assimilate. Sometimes it’s just not going to work out. It’s our right, as a sovereign nation to choose immigrants that we think are the likeliest to thrive and flourish and love us.”

Trump’s immigration speech was widely panned by critics in every direction. As Eli Stokols writes for Politico, Trump’s pre-speech visit to Mexico didn’t pan out particularly well, either:

Having ditched his traveling press corps, Trump’s lie that he and President Enrique Pena Nieto didn’t discuss who would pay for his border wall wasn’t exposed until the Mexican president tweeted that they had a few hours later. And minutes after he stepped onto another stage here Wednesday night and began to speak to his raucous supporters, it was even more clear that the sojourn across the southern border, much like his campaign’s two-weeks of gentle walkbacks, was a ruse—that Trump and his campaign had used Pena Nieto as a prop in an opening act that served only to set up an evening stem-winder. The farce was, in hindsight, clear even before Trump approached the mic, as two of his warm-up speakers, Rudy Giuliani and Jeff Sessions, donned Trump hats that read “Make Mexico Great Again too.”…

…A senior Clinton campaign adviser acknowledged that Trump’s daring Mexico gambit seemed effective and thus worrisome for a few hours Wednesday—until his speech a few hours later. “Not worried anymore,” the adviser said. “The Nuremberg speech put all that statesman-like stuff away.”

We’ll leave the commentary to our readers on this one.

16 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. Duke Cox says:

    OK…let's go delusional. Time to sit back and watch the poll numbers…..

    OMFG…..Duke …out.

  2. bullshit! says:

    The race ended last night.

  3. bullshit! says:

    If there's any justice, the careers of Mike Coffman and Clarice Navarro ended last night too.

  4. davebarnes says:

    If Eli Stokols used to live in Denver, why does he not know how to spell Peña?

  5. Conserv. Head Banger says:

    Trump did well enough to follow up a 1% lead over Hillary in a Rasmussen poll. Other polls are showing a statistical dead heat. My message to you Dems remains the same: complacency kills. 

    • BlueCat says:

      Razzies have been a joke for many cycles. She's up well beyond dead heat in the most reliable polls, the ones that get A and even A+ ratings. But, once again, you're the only one who obsesses about our alleged complacency,

      • BlueCat says:

        PS. Today the Razzie is the only one showing 1 point disapproval of Obama. All others show approval. A couple of years ago Razzie was the only one showing Obama a point into positive territory when everyone else had him underwater. It's no longer possible to say they're off because they skew right.  They're all over the place and must just have a lousy model.

        • Conserv. Head Banger says:

          I'm also the only Republican on this site; that I know of; who will tell it like it is. You're maybe expecting something coherent from Moderatus or Andrew C.? 

          • BlueCat says:

            I'm one of the many Dems here but I don't think I have much trouble telling it like or knowing it for what it is.  Most of my Dem friends are closer to terrified than complacent. Few are taking anything for granted. Trust me. 

        • Voyageur says:

          I forget the det ails bc but think razzie does a crappy job of dealing with cell phones.  The result is a lot of outliers


  6. mamajama55 says:

    People are paying attention. There must be some dinner table conversations going on about Trump's immigration "policy", because teens on both sides of the issue want to talk about it.  There are Teen Trumpkins who gravely repeat the talking points that there is Terror on the Border.

    Then there are the teens who know darn well that all Mexicans aren't rapists, that stereotypes kill people, that there is no more violent crime by "illegal immigrants" than by anyone else.

    Trump has stirred up so much anger around this issue. People are upset, worried, angry. Latino kids ask me all the time if I think Trump can win, and seem relieved when I say, "Probably not". They don't know anything about Hillary. They just don't want That Pendejo in the white house.

    • Conserv. Head Banger says:

      You also could tell your students that Trump is not really serious about controlling the USA borders since he says nothing about the 3,000 mile, largely unguarded, border, with Canada. As I recall, some of the 9/11 terrorists came into the US from Canada. 

      • BlueCat says:

        Not to mention the fact that his wall is a juvenile fantasy, getting Mexico to pay for it is just snake oil he's selling. He knows perfectly well none of it… the super wall with sensors above and below and a huge force on the ground to back it up, Mexican financing, rounding up and deporting 11 million people, is ever going to happen. Because it's nonsense. It's the Emperor's new clothes. It's just a fat assed salesman/showman behind a curtain.

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