“I don’t even know what that means,” MSNBC’s Joy Reid responded when Marco Gutierrez warned the nation about this particular coming scourge, “and I’m afraid to ask.” Gutierrez, who founded the Latinos for Trump group that hoped to facilitate outreach to Hispanic communities, might have eclipsed Ben Carson as Team Trump’s most problematic surrogate. Politico’s Zach Montellaro picks up the story:
“My culture is a very dominant culture,” the Mexican-born Marco Gutierrez said on MSNBC’s “All In With Chris Hayes.” “It is imposing and it’s causing problems. If you don’t do something about it, you’re going to have taco trucks on every corner.”
Joy Reid, who was guest-hosting Hayes’ show, cut him off, saying, “I don’t even know what that means, and I’m afraid to ask,” before going to New York state Sen. Adriano Espaillat, a Dominican, for a reaction.
“I’m offended,” Espaillat said.
Gutierrez defended himself, saying, “We have a lot of good things that we’re bringing to the United States, but we also have problems.”
“The Spanish never conquered Mexico,” Gutierrez said in an attempt to explain the dangers of his “dominant culture.” That’s about the sum total of the explanation other than his mention of “problems,” as Gutierrez then tried changing the subject back to policy.
As a campaign tactic or strategy, it seems … very odd. This seems designed to appeal to the nationalist-populist crowds who already back Donald Trump, and who see Latin American immigration as a threat to the, er, dominant American culture. How a declaration of the dangers of Latinos is supposed to be the basis of outreach to Latinos is either some of that eight-dimensional chess that Trump supporters claim is being played, or an utter faceplant. I’m betting on the latter.
Also, what exactly is wrong with taco trucks? They’re small businesses, provide value and employment and generate tax revenue, and they’re pretty popular to boot. I’m so old that I remember when the Right defended those small businesses.