Trump Has Lost A Few Hispanic Advisory Board Members Over Phoenix Speech

September 2, 2016 7:03 a.m.
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After Donald Trump delivered his long-awaited immigration speech on Wednesday and confirmed his plan to deport all undocumented immigrants from the United States, several members of the Republican nominee’s Hispanic Advisory Council called it quits.

At least four members of the board said that they will no longer support Trump, expressing disappointment that he did not soften his stance on deporting undocumented immigrants who have not committed additional crimes.

On Wednesday night, Jacob Monty, told Politico that he had resigned from the council, later lamenting to CNN that Trump’s deportation plan is “unrealistic, cruel.”

“It was the right thing for me to do to try to see if we could reason with him and get him to articulate a plan that was realistic and Republican. But what we heard last night was not a Republican plan,” Monty said on CNN. “That was pure populist propaganda.”

Several members followed, including Ramiro Pena, a Texas pastor.

“I am so sorry but I believe Mr. Trump lost the election tonight,” Pena said in an email to the Republican National Committee obtained by Politico. “The ‘National Hispanic Advisory Council’ seems to be simply for optics and I do not have the time or energy for a scam.”

Massey Villareal, a Texas businessman and former members of the advisory board, told NBC News that he will no longer vote for Trump.

“I’m going to flip, but not flop,” he said. “I am no longer supporting Trump for president, but cannot with any conscience support Hillary.”

And Grace Flores Hughes told Fusion that she has resigned from the Hispanic Advisory Council.

Alfonso Aguilar did not sit on Trump’s Hispanic Advisory Council, but backed Trump after hesitating to do so for a while. And after Trump’s Wednesday speech, Aguilar said he opposed the Republican nominee once again. he told Politico that Trump’s speech was disappointing.

“We decided to make a big U-turn to see if we could make him change. We thought we were moving in the right direction … we’re disappointed. We feel misled,” he said.

Mark Gonzales, the founder of the Hispanic Prayer Network and the Hispanic Action Network, told Buzzfeed News that he informed the RNC that he will not join the advisory council due to Trump’s speech, but said he will still vote for the Republican nominee.

“I texted them just to be official that I would not be giving an endorsement and serving on the council was out of the question,” he told Buzzfeed.

“It was a complete disappointment,” Gonzales said of Trump’s speech. “We were hoping he was going to go in a different direction than he did, but it was enforcement only measures dealing with only the bad of immigration — he completely left out the good immigrants bring to America.”

Though Trump has lost a few surrogates due to his speech full of hard-line immigration proposals, a few members of the advisory council plan on sticking with the Republican nominee.

Pastor Alfonso Delgado told CNN that he will stay on the council so he can continue to advise Trump on “what we believe is more humane.”

And George Rivera, the chair of the Pueblo County GOP in Colorado and member of he council, said he was pleased with Trump’s Wednesday speech.

“Donald Trump’s speech, I think, was amazing, and it was refreshing, to be honest with you, to finally have somebody who was telling the truth to the American people,” he told TPM.

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