Donald Trump Forced CNN to Cover the Victims This Time

Donald Trump with Victims' Families (Ralph Freso / Getty)
Ralph Freso / Getty

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump brought the parents of young Americans killed by illegal aliens onstage with him during his immigration speech in Arizona on Wednesday night — and this time, CNN was forced to cover their stories.

The last time the victims’ families had spoken collectively was onstage at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio in mid-July. On that occasion, CNN cut away from the victims’ stories, turning instead to its usual panel discussion. As a result, voters were denied the opportunity to hear from citizens who have been routinely ignored by both political parties, but whose experiences and concerns are at the core of the seemingly intractable debate about American immigration policies.

This time, Trump incorporated the victims’ families into his speech, bringing them onstage to introduce themselves and talk about their loved ones. As a result, CNN had to cover them — and to seethe: they were ignored by CNN’s panel discussion.

Arguably, these victims are the very reason that Trump exists as a political phenomenon. When few other politicians would listen, he took up their cause, meeting with the families of Jamiel Shaw Jr., Sabine Durden, and others just days after 31-year-old Kate Steinle was murdered by an illegal alien — a serial deportee and felon — in broad daylight on a pier in San Francisco.

On that date — July 10, 2015 — Trump was in 7th place (6.5%) in the polls in the Republican presidential primary, according to the RealClearPolitics averages. Jeb Bush was far ahead in first place (16.3%), followed by Scott Walker (10.5%) in second, Ben Carson (9.8%) in third, Marco Rubio (9.3%) in fourth, Mike Huckabee (7.8%) in fifth, and Rand Paul (7.3%) in sixth.

RealClearPolitics polls Trump meets victims (

RealClearPolitics poll averages, Republican presidential primary, July 10, 2015

A week later, Trump was in first place. Not because there are so many victims of murders by illegal aliens — though any number more than zero is too many — but because those victims symbolized broad public frustration with a government that has abandoned its citizens on so many issues fundamental to their welfare, from terrorism to health care to the economy.

Small wonder, then, that CNN continued to drown them out: they are the most potent voices against Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, whom the network is not-so-subtly committed to defending. But after being shamed by Breitbart News’ criticism, and outfoxed by Donald Trump’s stagecraft, CNN had to bear witness, however reluctantly.

Whether Trump wins or loses the election in November, his campaign has achieved that much for the victims, and for all Americans.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. His new book, See No Evil: 19 Hard Truths the Left Can’t Handle, is available from Regnery through Amazon. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.


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