Donald Trump has repeatedly insisted that his now-infamous comments about illegal Mexican immigrants will not hurt him with Hispanic voters. First, he declared that he would win the Hispanic vote in a general election simply by virtue of his ability to create jobs in America. (A new Reuters report documenting his companies' efforts to hire immigrant workers on temporary visas to fill hundreds of jobs doesn't exactly bolster that case.) Then, he repeatedly pointed to a poll showing that he was the top choice of Hispanics in Nevada -- a poll that included the responses of only a few dozen Hispanic Republicans -- and thus cannot be looked at as a reliable gauge of anything.
And now: More cold water. The new NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll released Sunday, in contrast to the Nevada poll, included a large group of Hispanic voters -- 250 in total. And overwhelmingly, that group viewed Trump negatively. Three-quarters saw Trump in a negative light, with more than 60 percent of them viewing him very negatively.
Trump's comments on immigration actually did slightly better than Trump himself, according to NBC. Only ("only") 55 percent of Latino respondents think that his reference to immigrants as rapists and criminals was "insulting and racist." Twenty-nine percent said that he was raising an important issue but "should have been more careful with the language he used." Another 14 percent said that Trump had "guts" in raising an "important problem."
Now, to be fair, this doesn't mean that Trump won't win the Hispanic vote nationally. Maybe there's such a thing as a "hate vote," or maybe it's the poll of 250 people that is iffy and not the one including only 35 Republicans in Nevada. Maybe, as with everything else orbiting the Trump campaign so far, what looks like a negative will inexplicably turn into a positive.
Or maybe not.