Donald Trump is a jackass, but at least he's a jackass without a TV show. NBC fired Trump—who had already given up his role (at least temporarily) on “The Celebrity Apprentice” in order to pursue a presidential run—from the network for inflammatory and racist comments he made about immigrants.
“At NBC, respect and dignity for all people are cornerstones of our values,” the company said in a statement on Monday. “Due to the recent derogatory statements by Donald Trump regarding immigrants, NBC is ending its business relationship with Mr. Trump.”
Last week, Univision decided to end its relationship with Trump by dropping his Miss USA and Miss Universe pageants, and now NBC has followed suit. The move comes after a Change.org petition asking NBC to get rid of Trump garnered more than 200,000 signatures. Trump has said he would sue Univision and has now seemingly threatened to sue NBC, saying that “their contract violating closure of Miss Universe/Miss USA will be determined in court."
While NBC has made it clear that Trump would not be returning to “The Celebrity Apprentice,” which at least seemed like a possibility prior to Monday’s announcement, they did not cancel the show. Trump reportedly owns a stake in the franchise, which the network said it would continue to license through Mark Burnett's United Artists Media Group.
As for the comments that landed Trump in hot water, he basically said that a large percentage of immigrants are rapists, murderers, or other criminals. He repeated the remarks a number of times, and stood by them again on Monday.
Here’s the first iteration of the comments, from when Trump announced his run for the presidency earlier this month:
The U.S. has become a dumping ground for everybody else’s problems. … When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best. They’re not sending you. They’re not sending you. 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.
When Trump was asked to explain those comments over the weekend by CNN’s Jake Tapper, he basically reiterated the stance.
"I like Mexico. I love the Mexican people. I do business with the Mexican people, but you have people coming through the border that are from all over. And they're bad. They're really bad," he said. "You have people coming in, and I'm not just saying Mexicans, I'm talking about people that are from all over that are killers and rapists and they're coming into this country.”
When asked why he was painting the 11 million undocumented immigrants in this country with such a broad brush when the number of rapists and criminals in that group was a small percentage, Trump responded, “I don’t think it’s a small percentage, it’s a lot. But it’s not Mexicans necessarily. They’re coming from all over.”
The New York Times reported that Trump stood by his comments even after the firing. “I told NBC I could not change my stance,” he said. “The fact is that my stance on immigration is correct.”
He also said in a statement on Monday that illegal immigrants are "pouring across our borders unabated. Public reports routinely state great amounts of crime are being committed by illegal immigrants."
Now if only the GOP would repudiate Trump, who finishes in the top-eight of the current Republican field according to a recent polling average from RealClearPolitics.com.