Softer Tones Cannot Mask Harmful Policies

Donald Trump speaking at CPAC 2011 in Washington, D.C. Photo: Gage Skidmore

In the president’s first speech to Congress, Mr. Trump managed to maintain his composure without resorting to the usual antics that have become a hallmark of his speeches. Still, his softer tone cannot mask his harmful policies that have affected millions of Americans.

We are deeply concerned by the president’s pursuit of policies that undermine the significant progress that our community, and other diverse communities across the country, have made in recent years. Donald Trump’s proposed cuts to vital programs, his refugee travel ban, and his inhumane, un-American executive orders on immigration have a real and lasting impact: the erosion of the civil rights of a significant number of our citizens, the separation of families, and the gutting of important education, housing, and health initiatives that will affect millions.

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“President Trump’s moderated tone and soft overtures to bipartisanship do not make the policies he has implemented and defended mightily in this speech any less harsh,” said our President and CEO Janet Murguía. “The policies are still the policies he has been touting since the beginning of the campaign, and his justifications are still as hyperbolic and fictional as they’ve ever been.”

On issue after issue important to Latinos, the president has proposed polices that would hurt rather than help them, despite his repeated claims that “help is on the way.” From health care, to education, to housing, Mr. Trump is offering proposals that will only make life more difficult for millions across the country.

“President Trump has said ‘help is on the way,’ but his definition of help still seems predicated on stripping away health coverage for millions, gutting our nation’s public school funding and weakening measures to ensure each student succeeds, and defaming and persecuting hardworking immigrants who are contributing to society,” Murguía said. “Real help would be ensuring that our civil rights are protected, our contributions acknowledged. Help is continuing the progress and social programs that have helped make our educational system more equitable, health care affordable and accessible, and the dream of owning a business or a home attainable, not pulling the rug out from under people,” said Murguía.

NCLR will remain vigilant in monitoring this administration, and we will continue to work closely with our Affiliate Network across the country, civil rights organizations, and community partners to protect and defend the progress our community has made.

“We will be relentless in that mission and we will hold our elected leadership accountable equally for their actions or inaction in the face of attacks to our community,” said Murguía. “Real American progress is when we all succeed, not when the success of some comes at the expense of our country’s most vulnerable.”

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