For years (decades really), Donald Trump has been making headlines for saying some pretty disgusting things. His latest claims about Mexico sending "rapists" and "killers" to the United States, made during his presidential announcement last month, have caused the real estate mogul to lose multimillion dollar contracts with NBCUniversal, Univision, and Macy's. But that hasn't fazed the Republican. On Wednesday, Trump defended his rapist comments in a bizarre tit-for-tat with CNN's Don Lemon.
Now, Lemon hardly is the paragon for smart television, but the CNN anchor was quick to confront Trump on his controversial comments about what's actually happening at our country's southern border. During the interview, Lemon asked Trump why he used the word "rapists" to describe Mexican immigrants, and Trump said we needed to look at the "statistics."
If you look at the statistics on rape, on crime, on everything, coming in illegally into this country, they're mind-boggling. If you go to Fusion, you'll see a story about 80 percent of the women coming in- and you know who owns Fusion? Univision!
Yes, Fusion is a joint news venture between ABC and Univision, but that doesn't legitimize whatever small victory of irony Trump may feel he's won. That's because the Fusion article he references actually tells a completely different story.
The story in question appears to be a 2014 piece titled "Is Rape The Price To Pay For Migrant Women Chasing The American Dream?" According to Fusion, 80 percent of Central American women and girls who pass through Mexico on their way to the United States are raped during the journey. The attackers are typically criminal gangs, traffickers, other migrants, or even government officials, the story reported. So Trump's understanding that Mexico is "sending" rapists to the United States is a complete and utter misinterpretation, a fact that Lemon quickly pointed out. That's when Trump unloaded a mini-tirade of hyperbolic levels:
Well, somebody's doing the raping, Don! I mean, somebody's doing it. If you think it's women being raped, well, who's doing the raping? Who's doing the raping?!
What's mind-boggling to me is how this man can be considered a serious contender for the Republican Party's nomination. A Quinnipiac University poll released Wednesday showed Trump is tied for second with 10 percent of the Republican vote, a strong position that has also translated in other polls. As Democrats toast to Trump's unraveling of the GOP's relationship with the Hispanic vote, the Republican Party must now do some serious damage control.
What's clear about this fiasco is that there is no chance in hell Republican leaders will give the party's nomination to him. The best thing the GOP can do now is to leverage Trump and his negative heyday into catapulting another candidate as the rational choice — a sort of lesser-of-two-evils situation, depending on how you look at it. But primaries are long ways from now, and with Trump's high ranking in the polls, this is definitely not the last we'll hear from him.
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