June 25, 2015. NPR by Greg Allen.- Following comments Donald Trump made about Mexican immigrants during his presidential announcement last week, Univision, the nation’s largest Spanish-language TV network, has announced it is cutting ties with Trump and dropping plans to broadcast the Miss Universe Pageant.
Trump, the businessman and now-presidential candidate, co-owns the pageant.
“When do we beat Mexico at the border?” Trump said during his lengthy presidential announcement speech at Trump Tower in New York. “They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs, they’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.”
In the days following the speech, Hispanic leaders and commentators excoriated Trump. Jorge Ramos, Univision’s news anchor, said Trump had become “the Hispanic community’s most hated man.”
Now, Univision has backed up Ramos’ comments with action. The network announced it is ending its relationship with Trump and the Miss Universe Pageant, which he co-owns. It is an announcement that likely comes with a cost. Univision just signed a five-year deal with the pageant in January. The Los Angeles Times reports Univision has already paid $2.5 million for this year’s pageant rights — rights the company now says it will not exercise.
With his comments, Trump has alienated a key part of the pageant’s core audience. Viewership for the Miss Universe Pageant has declined steeply in recent years among every demographic group except one — Hispanics.
Carlos Santiago advises companies on how best to reach the growing Hispanic market. He said Trump’s comments have hurt the pageant’s connection to Latinos.
“Donald Trump himself has been extremely marketing-oriented and growing brands,” Santiago said. “So, he must know the value that the pageant and the Miss Universe brand has among Hispanics.”
Trump said he plans to sue Univision for breach of contract. And today, he blamed Univision’s actions on the Mexican government. He claimed Mexico was putting pressure on the network because of his opposition to trade deals with that country.