(Jeff Malet, maletphoto.com)

Sean Hannity gets schooled on immigration: "People won't vote for a candidate who will deport your father"

The Fox News host is confused why Hispanic Americans don't like the GOP. Fusion's Jorge Ramos sets him straight


Scott Eric Kaufman
April 17, 2015 12:52AM (UTC)

Last night, Sean Hannity spoke to Fusion host Jorge Ramos about why the Hispanic community refuses to back Republican candidates who share their cultural identity like Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz.

He began by asking Ramos why we don't hear much about how historic a Rubio or Cruz presidency would be. Ramos answered that, on the one hand, both senators are choosing to follow Barack Obama in not making his race an issue in the election, and on the other, both Rubio and Cruz are Republicans of Cuban descent, whereas the majority of Latinos are of Mexican descent and vote Democratic.

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A slightly confused Hannity replied by saying that he doesn't believe in identity politics, only to characterize Latinos as people who share conservative values he identifies with: "hard work, family values, conservative on social issues, deep faith, love of country."

Ramos replied that "it's immigration," because "Latinos cannot see beyond immigration right now. It's a very simple concept, Sean -- people won't vote for a candidate who will deport your father, your friends, your colleagues, and your students."

Hannity detailed the draconian immigration policies of Mexico and Australia, then asked Ramos why it is that if you enter Mexico illegally from a Central American country, you're immediately thrown in jail or deported.

"It's awful," Ramos replied, confounding Hannity's expectations, "how they treat Central Americans in Mexico."

Ramos then applauded America as being "an exceptional country, an immigrant country," which caused Hannity to try talking over him, repeatedly saying "it's not an illegal immigrant country."

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Ramos went on to discuss the billions of dollars that immigrants -- including undocumented ones -- contribute to the United States economy, but all Hannity wanted to talk about were the problems that he believes they cause. "There's the criminal element!" he said, before returning to the topic at hand -- the possibility that the Republicans might have a Hispanic nominee for president.

"What I'm saying," Ramos tried to conclude, "is that if Cruz and Rubio choose not to support immigration reform," but Hannity cut him off and again appealed to identity politics.

"Even if it's the first Hispanic American president?" he asked. "Wow."


Scott Eric Kaufman

Scott Eric Kaufman is an assistant editor at Salon. He taught at a university, but then thought better of it. Follow him at @scottekaufman or email him at skaufman@salon.com.

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Editor's Picks Elections 2016 Immigration Reform Jorge Ramos Marco Rubio Sean Hannity Video

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