ABC News(NEW YOARK) — News anchor Jorge Ramos, who works for Univision and Fusion, was thrown out of a press conference with Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump in Iowa Tuesday night after trying to ask questions about immigration.
“You haven’t been called…go back to Univision,” Trump told Ramos before a security guard forcibly removed him. (Ramos later returned and was able to pose questions to Trump).
“We’d love for Mr. Trump to sit down for an in-depth interview with Jorge to talk about the specifics of his proposals,” Isaac Lee, CEO of Fusion — ABC’s sister network — and president of news for Univision, said in a statement.
On Wednesday morning, ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos asked Ramos on Good Morning America about the altercation and what happens next. Below is a Q&A with Ramos, edited for length:
STEPHANOPOULOS: Is this what you were expecting from Trump?
RAMOS: “What I would expect is that I can ask a question as a journalist because that’s our responsibility and I would expect Mr. Trump to answer honestly about what he really wants to do because he hasn’t given us specifics. I saw your show on Sunday. You pushed him on how he’s going to deport 11 million undocumented immigrants and he didn’t answer your question and he didn’t answer mine. What I didn’t expect is to be thrown out of a press conference. Never in my life, and I’ve been a journalist for more than 30 years, I’ve been thrown out of a press conference.”
Do you think Trump was directing the security guard to take you out?
“Absolutely. He was in control of the press conference. It is very clear with his body language that he was giving orders and I did wait for my turn. You know how it is in those press conferences. Two reporters before me asked a question and then I said, ‘I have a question on immigration.’ He didn’t say anything. I stood up. I started my question. He didn’t like my question and when he didn’t like my question then he motioned so the one security guard would come where I was and then threw me out of the press conference.”
What happened backstage?
“I waited outside and thanks to our colleagues — and I really emphasize and thank Tom Llamas from ABC — Tom confronted Donald Trump and told him, ‘Come on. I’ve asked questions to President Obama. I’ve asked questions to other leaders. How come Mr. Trump,’ Tom said, ‘you are not allowing him to ask you questions.’ And then my other colleagues also confronted Donald Trump and somebody from his campaign came out of the room and told me if I wanted to come in and ask my question. And I did, of course, I came all the way to Iowa to do that. Remember I tried to have an interview with Donald Trump. He didn’t allow me to have an interview. He published my cell phone and that’s what I wanted to do so I came back and I asked those questions.”
Have you heard from Trump or his team since the incident?
“No, and that’s — I think — as journalists, we have to denounce and espouse the dangerous words and extreme behavior of Donald Trump. No, I didn’t hear anything new. He has to explain how he wants to deport 11 million people. Can you imagine? How’s he going to do that? Is he going to put people in stadiums? We have to denounce that he wants to deny citizenship to children being born here. They’re citizens just like his and it is impossible to build a 1,900-mile wall between Mexico and the United States so that’s the kind of questions that I was asking Mr. Trump and obviously he didn’t give answers.”
How do you respond to critics who say you’re more advocate than a journalist?
“As a journalist you have to take a stand. I think the best journalism happens when you take a stand and when it comes to racism, discrimination, corruption, public life, dictatorship or human rights, as journalists, we are not only required but we are forced to take a stand and clearly when Mr. Trump is talking about immigration in an extreme way, we have to confront him and I think that’s what I did yesterday.”
Do you think Trump will give you an interview now?
“He didn’t want to give me an interview before but right after the interview he said, ‘We’ll talk,’ so let’s see if he keeps his promise. I’m not sure.”
Trump is topping the polls. What does that say to you?
“It says it’s very clear that there are many Americans who think what Donald Trump is saying is right, that they support him. That’s exactly what’s happening. He continues to say that he’s winning the Hispanic vote. That is not true. 75 percent of Latinos have a negative image of him. However, as a journalist, I have to admit that as a journalist I’m still surprised. But the fact is that millions of Americans believe what Donald Trump is saying and millions of Americans are supporting him. That’s the only way to explain the polls.”
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