Kelly to Ramos on Trump: ‘What’s it like to be caught in the crosshairs’

27 Aug 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Donald Trump vs. Jorge Ramos, redux.

Donald Trump booting Jorge Ramos out of his press conference seems to be the straw that has broken the camel’s back when it comes to Latin artists and Trump.

On August 26, Ricky Martin wrote an “open letter” to Trump saying “enough is enough.” The arrogance shown against Jorge Ramos reflects on a man who didn’t learn from the history that so hurt the United States and caused so much suffering due to inequality among races. But they “can’t bring a butter knife to a Howitzer battle.” As another Republican debate looms — this one Sept. 16 on CNN — frontrunner Donald Trump barnstormed Iowa where he kicked the country’s most popular Spanish-speaking journalist out of an event and doubled down on sexist broadsides aimed at Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly. Although politicians and journalists clash every day—exchanging insults and trading slights—this tussle has spilled into the quick-moving media stream because neither Trump nor Ramos is a normcore performer. Broadcast live on CNN, with cellphone notices alerting viewers to tune in, news of Ramos’ ouster in Dubuque, Iowa, on Tuesday night exploded on social media, writing the latest chapter of the notorious feud between Republican presidential front-runner Trump and the country’s biggest Spanish-language network, which is based in the Miami suburb of Doral. “Go back to Univision,” Trump told Ramos after telling him several times to sit down, as one of his security guards physically escorted Ramos out. But prodding Ramos, who has been called the Spanish-language Walter Cronkite, could prove dangerous for Trump, who thus far been something of a Teflon candidate.

But it has also left many wondering when Trump’s time in the spotlight will come to an end. “You have to give him credit, he has an intuitive sense for what a certain segment of voters will respond to,” said ABC News political analyst Matthew Dowd. “I don’t think he’s going to suffer right now.” And Trump’s renewed attack on Kelly — which prompted a lengthy statement from Fox News chief Roger Ailes — had many strategists scratching their heads. (Of course, Newt Gingrich also experimented with attacking Fox News in 2012, albeit in a less public and extreme fashion.) “What led him to do this?” Bob Shrum, the seasoned Democratic political strategist and current Warschaw Professor of Politics at the University of Southern California, wondered about Trump’s Monday night Twitter tirade against Kelly. “Does he sit down and just fly into rages? Here’s why: The 57-year-old has anchored “Noticiero Univision,” Spanish-language TV’s No.1-ranked newscast, for nearly three decades and is considered a trusted source of news.

The two men engaged in a testy back-and-forth over Trump’s immigration plan, which entails building a “beautiful” wall along the border — paid by Mexico, Trump says — and, somehow, deporting the 11 million people who are in the country illegally. A 2010 study by the Pew Hispanic Center found that among Latinos, Ramos was the second-most recognized Latino leader behind Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor, and other polls have shown he is one of the most trusted public figures among Latinos. “Spanish-language news has almost the same pull as the priest in the pulpit,” Rep. I join the voice of my friend and compatriot, Ricky Martin, and that of millions of Latins who have grown up, studied and work day to day in this country. Afterward, Univision said Trump should agree to an interview with Ramos — the kind of interview that would be a TV-ratings boon for a celebrity anchor who already draws millions of viewers a week.

Xavier Becerra (D-Los Angeles), told the Los Angeles Times in 2013. “And Jorge Ramos is the pope, he’s the big kahuna.” Ramos has a lot of followers: According to Nielsen ratings, more than 2 million viewers tune in to “Noticiero Univision” nightly. Trump had already emerged from a one-sided war with Kelly after she questioned him about past misogynist remarks about women during the Aug. 6 debate on the network. For perspective, in 2013, that was three times the audience of CNN’s “The Situation Room With Wolf Blitzer.” And according to recently published research, the GOP’s presidential nominee would need to win nearly half of the Latino vote to make it to the White House. (President Obama won reelection with 71% of the Latino vote). During the last presidential election cycle, Washington Monthly called Ramos the broadcaster who would most determine the outcome of the 2012 election. As a presidential candidate, Mr Trump is going to get tough questions from the press and has to answer them.” A GOP “autopsy” report after losing the 2012 presidential race stressed appealing to the growing Hispanic electorate to win future elections.

Cooke and Allahpundit, who don’t necessarily admire Trump, rose to praise Ramos’ ejection. “Having a press credential in your pocket does not entitle you to behave like Code Pink,” wrote Cooke, while Allahpundit accused Ramos of “grandstanding” and “heckling.” Cooke and Allahpundit are right, of course, but a political news conference is not a memorial service at which all in attendance must keep their heads bowed. Nothing flies in the face of that more than all of Trump’s 2016 immigration talk; a Gallup poll released Monday shows Trump has a net favorability rating of minus 51 percent among Hispanic voters.

The high solemnity of political news conferences confers upon a politician priestlike or kinglike status: He stands a foot or two higher than the mortals questioning him, looking down. Trump demonstrated complete disregard for him and for the countless Hispanics whom Jorge seeks to represent,” Univision Communications Chief Executive Randy Falco said in a statement. Ramos has faced criticism over the news that his daughter is working for Hillary Rodham Clinton’s presidential campaign, but he has said her job doesn’t affect his work. “Like many reporters who have parents, siblings or other family members that are active in politics, this will not change how I approach my duty as a journalist,” Ramos wrote in a blog post. Ramos quit his first reporting job at a Mexico City TV station after his bosses demanded he soften a piece critical of the Mexican government and he refused. Far from opposing these imperious ways, many reporters, especially those who consider themselves members of the journalistic guild, applaud the arrangement.

Trump told NBC’s Today Show on Wednesday morning that he bounced Ramos because he didn’t wait his turn: “This man gets up and starts ranting and raving and screaming, and honestly very disrespectful to all the other reporters.” Ramos, who last week called Trump “the loudest voice of intolerance, hatred and division in the United States” and wrote a column earlier this week envisioning the U.S. as “Trumplandia,” spoke about the incident on the 11 p.m. Not to get all Chomskian on you, but by virtue of their obedience, the guildsmen can count on the king’s attention and convert that attention into bylines.

After confronting Romney about his proposed “self-deportation” policy, Ramos turned to Obama. “A promise is a promise,” he said, prodding the president over the administration’s deportation of more than 1.4 million people and failure to tackle immigration in his first term. “And, in all due respect, you didn’t keep that promise.” Fox News’s Jesse Watters, who specializes in on-camera confrontations with left-wing subjects, said that Ramos “acted like an illegal immigrant” and was treated accordingly. Univision newscast — on America with Jorge Ramos, his weekly program on Univision’s English-language sister network Fusion. “After two or three questions, I thought it was my turn and my right to ask a question, so I stood up, and I started asking Mr. On site after site, conservatives scoffed at the idea that Ramos had done something heroic by standing up and saying Trump’s immigration plan was built on “false promises” and racial animus. “What he wants to say is that he thought he had a greater moral right to question Trump,” wrote the anonymous blogger Allahpundit at HotAir.com. “He’s an activist. It’s just too easy for the organizers of news conferences to ban a known agitator from the premises, and nobody wants to view (or participate) in a news conference that’s turned into a mosh pit.

As Trump’s candidacy has blurred the lines among politics, news and entertainment, it’s increasingly clear that the media is re-enforcing Trumps antics. “It’s not just confined to Fox. When you’re speaking open-borders ‘truth’ to security power, your righteous urgency leaves no room for professional courtesy.” Today, at a campaign rally for Sen. The incident dominated Spanish-language radio airwaves in Miami during Wednesday morning drive-time, with Bernadette Pardo, host of the Pedalea con Bernie (Pedaling with Bernie) show on Radio Mambí — a Cuban-American stronghold now owned by Univision — barraged with callers wanting to discuss the fracas. They’re all part of it,” said Michael Meyers, the Republican strategist and president of TargetPoint Consulting. “Morning Joe has turned into the Trump hour; the market’s in a free fall and all they’re talking about is Trump.

Rand Paul (R-Ky.) in this eastern Washington city, every voter who was asked about the Trump/Ramos faceoff said that Trump had gotten the better of it. “You know what Trump showed me?” said Debra Goodwin, a local Tea Party Patriots organizer. “That is a man in charge. In an only-in-TV twist, Ramos was scheduled for an interview Wednesday night with Fox News’ Megyn Kelly, the anchor Trump targeted after she asked him questions he didn’t like at a GOP presidential debate earlier this month. I can’t imagine they’ll get even an eighth of the coverage of Trump.” The circus atmosphere surrounding Trump has produced a ratings bonanza (more than 24 million viewers watched the Fox News debate). In August, Trump has garnered 50 to 60 percent “of all coverage received by the GOP field,” according to Nate Silver. “In other words,” wrote Silver on FiveThirtyEight, “Trump is getting as much coverage as the rest of the Republican field combined.” Meyers likened Trump to “the new kid at high school who shows up and beats up the playground bully.

Ramos set off a Trump controversy two months ago, shortly after the New York real-estate magnate — against all political predictions — announced his candidacy and accused Mexico of sending people illegally over the U.S. border: “They’re bringing drugs. Journalists like Sam Donaldson of ABC News and Chris Wallace of NBC News were right to start screaming their questions any time he appeared in public. A modern article of journalistic faith holds that journalists should never become the story, and by putting himself out there to unsettle the Trump show, Ramos did just that.

And some, I assume, are good people.” A Twitter enthusiast like Trump, Ramos tweeted negative reviews about Trump the next day (including from el Nuevo Herald’s editorial board) and followed up with a column calling Trump’s words “dangerous.” In short order, Univision broke ties with the Miss Universe Organization partly owned by Trump. In doing so he has tapped into voter frustration with Washington cronyism with a from-the-gut style that has succeeded in not only positioning him ahead of the pack, but diminished his opponents in the process. “It’s all persona. Ramos didn’t splash Trump with pig’s blood or anything, he merely violated convention in an attempt to break news on his own terms by speaking out of turn. Miami-Dade County publicly condemned Trump, a part-time Palm Beach County resident who just a few months earlier wanted to take over management of a Miami-Dade-run golf course on Crandon Park.

He creates an aura around him,” added Dowd. “It seems the other candidates around him have gotten smaller and are operating from a place of fear.” But therein lies an opportunity. One strike against Ramos, offered by the journalistic orthodoxy, is that he’s not an “objective” journalist but an advocacy journalist, therefore he and his work can’t be trusted. Then came the muckrakers and their contemporary inheritors—Jessica Mitford, Michael Harrington, Ralph Nader, Jack Anderson, the gangs at Ramparts and Mother Jones magazines, and such current partisans as Glenn Greenwald, David Corn and others who have made important news without sacrificing their personal views. Add to that the fact that Trump has already filed suit against Univision for dropping his Miss Universe pageant, and his tirade against the network’s most high-profile journalist was doubly inevitable. Disrespected by Ramos, the always-ready-to-insult mogul did what he always does when he feels abused—he took out the verbal strap and started whipping.

Trump wisely allowed Ramos back in the room and took his questions, positioning himself as the disciplinarian who can humanize himself when necessary by adding a sprinkle of mensch, as they volleyed back and forth.

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