Pence tells crowd at Cinco de Mayo party Trump has made Latinos 'a priority'

Mike Pence and Donald Trump.
(Image credit: Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images)

Vice President Mike Pence told revelers at a Cinco de Mayo celebration Thursday that President Trump has made "the Latino community a priority" and "always will."

"We are, as the saying goes, with a few exceptions, a nation of immigrants, and that's as true today as it was at the hour of America's birth," Pence said, before launching into a story about his own Irish immigrant grandfather. Later, he said that "economically, culturally, in our churches, our towns and cities across this country, the truth is that Mexican Americans and Hispanic Americas as a whole make a difference in America every single day. And that really is what we celebrate in Cinco de Mayo."

Cinco de Mayo is a day to commemorate Mexico's triumph over French forces in 1862's Battle of Puebla, and Trump marked last year's holiday with a tweet that plugged Trump Tower's taco bowls ("the best") and attempted some flattery ("I love Hispanics!"). During his campaign, Trump famously said Mexico was sending "rapists" and criminals to the U.S., vowed to build a wall along the U.S./Mexico border that Mexico would eventually pay for, insulted a judge of Mexican heritage, and had Univision journalist Jorge Ramos removed from a press conference after daring to ask him a question. The drama didn't end with the inauguration; once Trump was in the White House, Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto canceled his February trip to Washington because of the proposed wall.

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Catherine Garcia

Catherine Garcia is night editor for Her writing and reporting has appeared in Entertainment Weekly and, The New York Times, The Book of Jezebel, and other publications. A Southern California native, Catherine is a graduate of the University of Redlands and the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.