Univision cuts ties to Trump
Media giant says the mogul made ‘ insulting remarks’ about Mexican immigrants.
Spanish- language media giant Univision Communications has cut business ties with Donald Trump, saying the real estate mogul made “insulting remarks” about Mexican immigrants when he announced that he was running for president.
Univision said Thursday that it would not broadcast the Miss USA pageant on July 12 as scheduled. It plans to sever its relationship with the Miss Universe Organization, which is part- owned by Trump.
The furor started last week when Trump kicked off his presidential campaign and, in a wide- ranging speech, blasted U. S. efforts to secure the U. S.- Mexico border.
“The U. S. has become a dumping ground for everybody else’s problems,” Trump told supporters during his June 16 campaign announcement. “When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best.”
“They’re sending people that have lots of problems. ... They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists,” said Trump, who then added: “And some, I assume, are good people.”
Latinos make up 17% of the U. S. population, according to U. S. Census f igures. Two- thirds of the more than 54 million Latinos in the U. S. are Mexican immigrants or they can trace their ancestry to Mexico.
“At Univision, we see f irst- hand the work ethic, love for family, strong religious values and the important role Mexican immigrants and Mexican Americans have had and will continue to have in building the future of our country,” the company said in its state- ment.
“We will not be airing the Miss USA pageant on July 12 or working on any other projects tied to the Trump organization.”
Univision declined to comment on the f inancial implications of failing to fulf ill its commitments to the Miss Universe Organization.
The network in January signed a new f ive- year deal for Spanish- language broadcast rights for the Miss Universe and Miss USA pageants, which have performed particularly well on Spanish- language TV networks.
Univision had already paid the $ 2.5- million fee to cover its obligations this year for the pageant rights, according to a person familiar with the arrangement who was not authorized to publicly discuss details. The f ive- year contract with the Miss Universe Organization was valued at more than $ 13 million.
Trump could file a breach of contract lawsuit against Univision.
“We intend to pursue all legal rights and remedies available to us pursuant to the terms of the license agreement,” said Michael Cohen, Trump’s special counsel. He added that Trump’s comments were not about Mexican immigrants, but were intended to shine a spotlight on shortcomings in U. S. immigration policies and enforcement.
Trump also has sought to clarify his remarks, saying that he has great respect for Mexico and its people.
“I have many successful business relationships with Mexican companies and employ, and am close friends with, many Mexican people,” Trump said in a written statement. “The disappointment I expressed relates to our incompetent politicians and their failed trade and immigration policies.”
Trump on Thursday accused the Mexican government of putting pressure on Univision, the largest Spanish- language media company in the U. S., to back out of its deal with the Miss Universe Organization. Mexican entertainment behemoth Grupo Televisa is a part owner of the privately held Univision.
“Mexican leadership has been doing serious damage to the United States by out-negotiating our representatives,” Trump said. “They are taking our jobs, taking our money and at the same time killing us at the border with illegals from all over the world freely f lowing into our country.”
NBC holds the Englishlanguage rights to the two pageants and has not decided whether to go forward with the July 12 broadcast.
One Latin music star, J Balvin, who was scheduled to perform during the Miss USA pageant, has already dropped out of the show.
J Balvin “can no longer in good conscience agree to take part in an event that is overseen by and creates a profit for Donald Trump while Mr. Trump attacks the hardworking Latino immigrant community with hateful political rhetoric,” a representative of the artist said.
Univision News and the local newsrooms at Univision radio and TV stations would continue to provide coverage of presidential candidates, including Trump, the company said. No decision has been made on whether Trump would be included in any political debates that Univision has been organizing.
“THE U. S. has become a dumping ground for everybody else’s problems,” Donald Trump told supporters during his June 16 campaign announcement. “When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best.”