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MSNBC’s Joy Reid, filling in for Chris Hayes, goes head-to-head with Steve Cortes, a Latino Trump supporter of Donald Trump, for using the term “illegals” to describe illegal immigrants.
Reid was also incredulous that Cortes would use that term, being that he is a Hispanic. Cortes told Reid his parents came to the U.S. legally. She wasn’t impressed and lectured Cortes that she is also the daughter of immigrants.
“When it comes to the bedrock principles, I don’t disagree with him at all,” Cortes defended Trump on Thursday’s broadcast of MSNBC’s All In with Chris Hayes. “Those are twofold. Number one, we have to secure our border. Number two, there can be no citizenship for illegals. You cannot reward criminality.”
Reid stopped him right there.
“Hold on a second,” the MSNBCer said.
“I’m going to stop you right there. You are Hispanic, Steve. Are you comfortable with that term, illegals? That is a pejorative to a lot of people. Why do you use that term?” Reid asked, not believing a Latino would use such a term.
“You know why, because words matter,” Cortes said.
“Yeah, they do,” Reid shot back.
“If you do something that is against the law, it’s illegal,” Cortes reminded Reid. “If you go into a store and you shoplift, you’re not an undocumented holder of a good, you’re a thief. If you come to the United States against the immigration laws of the United States, you’re not undocumented, You’re illegal.
“You said that you didn’t agree with all the things he said last night. point out two or three of the things that you did not like?” Reid asked.
“Joy, listen, I would have a softer tone on illegals,” Cortes suggested.
This time the interview came to a screeching halt.
“Can you do me a favor? Just while you’re talking to me, can you not use that terminology?” a very offended Reid asked.
“No, I will not do you that favor,” Cortes responded.
“Oh, interesting,” a stunned Reid said.
“Because the English language matters,” Cortes told Reid. “They’re here illegally. We can’t get over that. My father came here legally.”
“My parents came here into this country as immigrants too, Steve,” she said. “My parents came here too, so congratulations on that.”
“I’m not going to use code words. That’s absurd,” Cortes said about substituting ‘illegals’ for another term.
“You just used a code word,” Reid said.
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