Donald Trump Jr.’s girlfriend, a former Fox News host, implied that Puerto Ricans are immigrants when they are in fact U.S. citizens.
Many Puerto Ricans are expressing dissatisfaction on social media in reaction to statements made by Kimberly Guilfoyle during her Republican National Convention speech Monday night.
Guilfoyle, a Trump campaign adviser, and Donald Trump Jr.’s girlfriend, described herself as a first-generation American, even though she is the daughter of a Puerto Rican woman. Her mother, Mercedes, was born in Puerto Rico, and her father, Anthony “Tony” Guilfoyle, was from Ireland.
“As a first-generation American, I know how dangerous [the Democratic] socialist agenda is. My mother, Mercedes, was a special education teacher from Aguadilla, Puerto Rico. My father, also an immigrant, came to this nation in pursuit of the American Dream,” said Guilfoyle, who is also an attorney.
These declarations have puzzled Puerto Ricans because the island is a United States territory, and its residents are U.S. citizens, as stipulated by the Jones Act of 1917.
Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), addressed the declarations on Tuesday, pointing out that Guilfoyle’s message “reflects their belief that Latinos aren’t real citizens […]”
Trump’s response to the damage caused in September 2017 by Hurricane María in Puerto Rico has been harshly criticized. The President even asked if the island could be sold, or exchanged for Greenland, under those circumstances.
Zoé Laboy, former Puerto Rico chief of staff, also questioned Guilfoyle’s statements and asked Puerto Rican Republican Party members to address her words.
Puerto Rican actress Roselyn Sánchez also commented on Guilfoyle’s declarations and puertorriqueñidad of Guilfoyle in a tweet.
Guilfoyle was born in San Francisco in 1969. Her mother died of leukemia when she was 11 years old. The former prosecutor joined Fox News in 2006 as host of the weekend show The Lineup. She co-hosted Fox’s afternoon show The Five until the summer of 2018.
Despite considering herself Latina, Guilfoyle’s speech seemed to support the President’s line of thought when in 2015 he stated that people coming into the U.S. from Mexico were criminals, drug dealers, and rapists.
“Human, sex, and drug traffickers should not be allowed to cross our border,” Guilfoyle said in her speech.
The former Fox News host was married to Gavin Newsom, Democratic governor of California. She decried California during her speech, saying the state has been turned by the Democrats into “a land of discarded heroin needles in parks, riots in streets, and blackouts in homes.”