Donald Trump’s comments about Mexican immigrants during his presidential campaign announcement may be costing him a growing of number of business relationships, but they also appear to have given him a bump in the polls.
According to the results of a CNN/ORC survey released Wednesday, Trump, at 12 percent, sits second behind former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (19 percent) in the race for the Republican nomination. The real estate mogul has jumped 9 points since his announcement, the poll found. Trump and Bush are the only two candidates on the GOP side to see double-digit support among Republicans and Republican-leaning voters.
A Suffolk University poll of New Hampshire GOP voters conducted following Bush’s and Trump’s presidential announcements had the former Florida governor (14 percent) leading Trump (11 percent) by just 3 points. A Quinnipiac University survey of likely Republican Iowa caucus-goers also had Trump reaching double digits at 10 percent — tied for second place with Ben Carson and 8 points behind Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, who has yet to formally announce his candidacy.
The CNN/ORC survey, conducted June 26-28, was taken before NBC announced it was cutting ties with Trump over comments in which he vowed to build a wall between Mexico and the United States to keep Mexican criminals and “rapists” from crossing the border if he were elected president.
“At NBC, respect and dignity for all people are cornerstones of our values,” NBCUniversal said in a statement. “Due to the recent derogatory statements by Donald Trump regarding immigrants, NBCUniversal is ending its business relationship with Mr. Trump.”
The Miss USA and Miss Universe pageants, which are part of a joint venture between NBC and Trump, will no longer air on the network, NBC said. Trump had previously announced that he would not host the NBC reality series “The Apprentice” while seeking the 2016 Republican presidential nomination.
Trump poses with Erin Brady after she was crowned Miss USA 2013. (Photo: Steve Marcus/Reuters)
On Monday, Trump released a statement saying NBC is “weak” and accusing the network of “trying to be politically correct.”
“We must have strong borders and not let illegal immigrants enter the United States,” he said in a statement emailed to reporters. “As has been stated continuously in the press, people are pouring across our borders unabated. Public reports routinely state great amounts of crime are being committed by illegal immigrants. This must be stopped and it must be stopped now.
“If NBC is so weak and so foolish to not understand the serious illegal immigration problem in the United States, coupled with the horrendous and unfair trade deals we are making with Mexico, then their contract violating closure of Miss Universe/Miss USA will be determined in court,” Trump continued. “Furthermore, they will stand behind lying Brian Williams, but won’t stand behind people that tell it like it is, as unpleasant as that may be.”
Last week, Univision, which also airs the Miss USA and Miss Universe pageants, announced it would end its relationship with Trump over his “insulting” remarks.
On Tuesday, Trump filed suit against Univision for more than $500 million, saying the Spanish-language TV network is attempting to suppress his freedom of speech “as he begins to campaign for the nation’s presidency.”
Univision called the suit “factually false and legally ridiculous.”
Trump waves from his SUV after a backyard reception in Bedford, N.H., on Tuesday. (Photo: Dominick Reuter/Reuters)
On Wednesday, Macy’s announced it would stop selling Trump’s signature menswear collection in light of his comments about immigrants.
At a backyard party in Bedford, N.H., Tuesday evening, Trump stood by his remarks.
“I understand everyone loves what I’m doing in terms of the border, because we have to stop the illegals from coming in,” Trump said, adding that he has a great relationship with Hispanics. “Thousands of people over the years have worked for me from all the different Latin countries.”
Trump said he had a “great relationship” with NBC for more than a decade, but executives “fell prey to some people protesting, very small amount of people, and they got very angry with me because I didn’t do ‘Celebrity Apprentice.’”
“I look at their programming and I say, ‘I guarantee you, I could do a lot better with their programming than that,’” he said. “I would be a great programmer. I know what sells.”
A piñata depicting Trump hangs outside a workshop in Reynosa, Mexico. (Photo: Daniel Becerril/Reuters)