Obama says Hispanic Trump voters looked past ‘racist’ comments because they agreed with him on gay marriage & abortion
“People were surprised about a lot of Hispanic folks who voted for Trump,” the former president said during a Wednesday appearance on ‘The Breakfast Club’ to promote his memoir ‘A Promised Land.’
Obama chalked up Hispanic support for Trump to “evangelical” voters who weighed certain issues as less important than their faith.
“The fact that Trump says racist things about Mexicans or puts detainees, undocumented workers, in cages, they think that’s less important than the fact that he supports their views on gay marriage or abortion,” he said.
Obama on @breakfastclubam: “… There’s a lot of evangelical Hispanics who, the fact that Trump says racist things about Mexicans, or puts undocumented workers in cages, they think that’s less important than the fact that he supports their views on gay marriage or abortion." pic.twitter.com/8OpocwYrLV— The Recount (@therecount) November 25, 2020
It’s unclear what Obama believes Trump’s view on gay marriage is, as the current president entered office in favor of gay marriage. He did, however, state multiple times he approved of “traditional marriage” while first campaigning for office, but then said in 2016 that he considered the legality of the issue “settled.” Obama was against legalization until 2012.
Critics mocked Obama for his “unifying tone” and dismissal of Trump-supporting Hispanic voters, a voting bloc with which Trump made gains in 2020 compared to 2016 in states like Florida.
“Obama is very disappointed in those who disagree with him. They are obviously okay with racism because they are religious bigots, even if they are Hispanic,” author and podcaster Ben Shapiro tweeted in reaction to the former president’s comments.
As always, as @redsteeze says, Obama is very disappointed in those who disagree with him. They are obviously okay with racism because they are religious bigots, even if they are Hispanic. https://t.co/aoM30AhA5s— Ben Shapiro (@benshapiro) November 25, 2020
“Oh man, I missed his unifying tone,” Tablet Magazine associate editor Noam Blum added.
Oh man, I missed his unifying tone. https://t.co/MZR0gfwnLc— Noam Blum (@neontaster) November 25, 2020
In a separate tweet, Blum added that Obama’s words may not completely match reality, as both he and Hillary Clinton got more support than their opponents from evangelical Hispanic voters in the 2012 and 2016 presidential races.
Obama carried Hispanic evangelicals by 11 points in 2012. Clinton carried them by 13 points in 2016. pic.twitter.com/cQnWJTnZUA— Noam Blum (@neontaster) November 25, 2020
Others have also pointed to Obama’s own record not quite matching his comments, given that he was not only against gay marriage being legalized when first elected, but many of the “cages” referenced were built and utilized during his administration.
“Remember, Obama built those cages. Not all Latinos are from Mexico. Trump came into office supporting gay marriage, unlike Obama,” Daily Wire editor Ashe Short wrote.
Obama today: Obama’s policies: pic.twitter.com/laghfbVH40— Justine Sanders (@JustineAnnSand) November 25, 2020
Since it looks like Barack Obama forgot who build the cages, maybe this refresher from his former Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson is helpful. "Chain link barriers, partitions, fences, cages, whatever you want to call them, were not invented on January 20, 2017." https://t.co/pqyAHmfLDqpic.twitter.com/14K2XOTkhh— Steve Guest (@SteveGuest) November 25, 2020
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