Donald Trump has left Latinos completely unrepresented in the President’s Cabinet for the first time since the Reagan Administration. Over 33 million Americans are Latino, and it is the fastest growing minority ethnicity in America. Trump’s glaring omission isn’t helped by incoming White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer, who said that “the number one thing American people should focus on, is that he is selecting the best and the brightest?” he said during a break in his Trump Hotel infomercial, clearly indicating that the President-elect doesn’t believe any Latinos are best or brightest.
This plainly shows that the President-elect doesn’t believe any Latinos are best or brightest. Instead, Spicer touted choosing Senator’s Mitch McConnell’s (R-KY) wife, who is Asian-American and violated a federal law while serving in the Bush Administration, the African-American neurosurgeon who admitted he’s not qualified to serve, and by selecting South Carolina’s Indian-American Governor as a political favor to an early supporter, saying:
“I think that when you look at the totality at his administration — the people that he’s talked to, the people that he’s met with, the people that he’s appointing — you see a president who’s committed to uniting this country, who’s bringing the best and brightest together. Look at the cabinet — Elaine Chao, Dr. Ben Carson, Nikki Haley, the first Indian-American.”
Congressional Democrats didn’t wait long to blast Donald Trump for spitting in the eye of the many Latinos who swallowed their pride – or perhaps are racists themselves – and voted for the Republican candidate.
Texas Democrat Rep. Filemon Vela went on a tweetstorm after a group of constituents from his district were insulted as “beaners” on a visit to Washington, DC in a show of open racism unusual for our nation’s capital, though not unexpected with a few hundred thousand Trump supporters in town. California Democrat Rep. Tony Cárdenas said what most of his constituents, and really most political observers, really think of Donald Trump and the new Republican Party’s act of public disavowal of Hispanic-Americans:
Trump's cabinet picks do not ensure that he's got the best and the brightest — they do the opposite. pic.twitter.com/n4ugAlADw0
— Rep. Tony Cárdenas (@RepCardenas) January 19, 2017
The Hispanic Congressional Caucus chaired by Democratic Representative Michell Lujan Grisham (D.-N.M.) released a statement lamenting the Republican Party’s tremendous slight to Hispanic-Americans who have served both parties in such key roles as Secretary of Energy, Ambassador to the United Nations and only once as Attorney General.
“Mr. Trump’s decision to exclude Hispanics from serving in his Cabinet is inexcusable and deeply damaging to our representative democracy. The President-Elect has dangerously signaled that the people who advise the President do not need to represent all of America.
“His decision erodes the forward progress made by every U.S. President since Ronald Reagan, to seek out bright and qualified Hispanics to serve our nation as cabinet members. Over the past 29 years, Hispanics have served our nation honorably in the highest levels of government in numerous cabinet positions, including: Alberto Gonzales as Attorney General, Manuel Lujan as Secretary of the Department of Interior and Bill Richardson as Department of Energy Secretary and U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations.
“We demand that Mr. Trump live up to his statement that he will be a President that unites and works on behalf of all Americans, by having an administration that represents the American people. If Mr. Trump intends to make false claims, then we will live up to our duty and hold him accountable.”
No amount of shine or spin from Sean Spicer can change the fact that Donald Trump’s Cabinet is not a very diverse group, and their primary unifying traits besides being Caucasian is that most of them are obscenely rich and frequent donors to the Republican Party.
Watch his shameful remarks here:
Grant Stern is an Editor-At-Large for OccupyDemocrats and published author. His new Meet the Candidates 2020 book series is distributed by Simon and Schuster. He's also mortgage broker, community activist and radio personality in Miami, Florida., as well as the producer of the Dworkin Report podcast. Grant is also an occasional contributor to Raw Story, Alternet, and the DC Report, and a senior advisor to the Democratic Coalition