August 30, 2015

Univision's Jorge Ramos has taken a lot of flack from the right wing, and sadly from his fellow "journalists" in the corporate media as well -- and I use that word lightly -- following his dust up with Donald Trump, where Trump had one of his body guards throw Ramos out of the press conference, followed by one of his supporters telling him to "Get out of my country!"

Sadly, ABC's Martha Raddatz was every bit as clueless as her counterparts in the media with her questioning of Ramos, as he explained to her why it's perfectly acceptable for reporters and journalists to stand up to those who are in power and call them out when they are behaving in dangerously, which is exactly what we've seen from Trump, who is more than happy to whip in to a frenzy the xenophobic racists in the GOP base.

RADDATZ: Donald Trump is not backing down. He says he got a lot of credit for the way he handled that. Trump seems to think he benefited from that confrontation.

Do you think he benefited among his supporters?

RAMOS: Well, I don't know exactly. But I think it is very important that as journalists, we challenge those who are in power. And I think it is very dangerous that he wants to do the largest mass deportation in modern history, that, by the way, would cost more than $137 billion. And I think it's very dangerous that he's promoting in his speeches bigotry and hatred against immigrants and Latinos.

And let me just give you a quick example. After I was expelled from that press conference -- and in 30 years, this is the first time I've been ejected for asking a question -- I saw a man, a Trump sympathizer, who told me, get out of my country," interesting, because I'm also a U.S. citizen.

But this happened just seconds after he told me go back to Univision.

So those messages of hatred and bigotry, that's precisely what Mr. Trump is promoting and that's what he's allowing to come out.

RADDATZ: Jorge, did you want a confrontation?

We've all seen that video. You stood up. You kept talking, you kept trying to get your question in.

Is that what you wanted, a confrontation?

RAMOS: No, what -- what I wanted was answers. As you know, I am just a reporter asking -- a reporter asking questions. And I sent him a note requesting an interview and instead of responding to that note, he published my cell phone on the Internet. And, of course, I have to change my cell phone.

So I -- he wasn't going to call me. What happened is I allowed two reporters, two reporters asked questions before me. Then I said, I have a question on immigration.

Nobody said anything. He -- he stayed silent. And when I started stating the premise of my question, which is that he can't deport 11 million or build a -- build a 1,900-mile wall or deny citizenship to the children born here, he clearly didn't like my question.

So he -- he did something very strange with his mouth. He signaled his bodyguard to take me out of the press conference and that's exactly what he did.

RADDATZ: Jorge...

RAMOS: But I wanted...

RADDATZ: -- Jorge, you -- you've been...

RAMOS: I asked one question. I want answers and he just didn't give me answers.

RADDATZ: OK. You have been very open about being an advocate for certain things. You said to George this week, "We have to denounce that he wants to deny citizenship to children being born here.

You're saying much the same this morning.

Does that put you in a difficult position covering the campaign?

RAMOS: I don't think so. I think that, as a reporter, many times, you have to take a stand. When it comes to racism, discrimination, corruption, public life, dictatorship and human rights, we have -- we have to take a stand.

And the basic examples of journalism that I have -- Edward R. Murrow against McCarthy; Cronkite during the Vietnam War; or "The Washington Post" reporters forcing the resignation of Richard Nixon, that's when reporters challenge those who are in power.

And I think it is our responsibility to do that. It is -- I find it ironic and fascinating that I'm being criticized by other reporters for asking questions.

Isn't that the essence, exactly, of what we do?

RADDATZ: Well, Jorge, I -- you are an enormously popular anchorman. We -- the most well known Spanish language anchor in America.

So tell me what effect this will have and what you are saying and what you are advocating for?

What effect will this have in your community and those who watch you?

RAMOS: Well, I just want to say that if he, Donald Trump, wants to change this country the way he is proposing, he has to be challenged. And this is what's going to happen. Latinos won't forget this. Sixty million Latinos will go to the polls next year. And just to put it in perspective, that number, President Barack Obama won by less than five million votes.

So in other words, Latinos could define this election. In -- in a year from now, I'm truly convinced that both parties, including Republicans -- and Donald Trump is a creation of the Republican Party -- both parties will be pleading for Hispanic voters, because no one, at the same time, no one really can make it to the White House without the Hispanic vote.

RADDATZ: OK, Jorge, I'm going to -- I'm going to thank you and stop you there.

But thank you very much for joining us this morning.

RAMOS: Thank you.

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