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  • Union Chief: ‘Trump Caused The Charleston Shooting’

    Dozens of protesters gathered Thursday afternoon at the future sight of Donald Trump’s newest hotel venture in Washington, D.C., to tell Trump he wasn’t welcome in the city.

    One of the protest organizers, John Boardman, executive secretary of the Unite Here Local 25 union of hotel and restaurant workers, said the comments of Donald Trump regarding illegal immigrants led to the shooting in Charleston that left nine people dead.

    “Donald Trump, with his hate speech, lends legitimacy to assassins like the young man who walked into a South Carolina church and murdered all those people,” Boardman said. “When crazy people hear hate speech, that’s the response.”

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    Boardman said his union was at the protest to show support for the “brave” companies like NBC and Macy’s that have cut ties with Trump after he refused to back down from comments he made calling illegal immigrants “killers” and “rapists.”

    Counter protesters, led by Richard Rosero and boasting a large attendance of black people, came to show their support for Trump, and said the comments Trump made were ill-advised, but he is not a racist.

    “He said those words,” Rosero said. “Alright, do I believe that he is a racist? No, I don’t think so.”

    Local and national politicians, along with members of the Latino community organized the protest in front of the Trump site to show their solidarity and flex their collective muscle.

    “He might be a billionaire, but the biggest minority here in the United States are the Latinos, and we have an economical power that can break him,” said Roy Molena, one of the protesters.

    D.C.’s shadow Rep. Franklin Garcia along with shadow Senators Paul Strauss and Michael Brown also spoke to the crowd in front of the old U.S. Post Office Building, which Trump is set to renovate into a luxury hotel.

    On Wednesday, D.C.-based celebrity chef and immigrant Jose Andres backed out of plans to open another restaurant in Trump’s hotel, because of the comments Trump made regarding illegal immigrants.

    “Donald Trump’s recent statements disparaging immigrants make it impossible for my company and I to move forward with opening a successful Spanish restaurant in Trump International’s upcoming hotel in Washington, D.C.,” Andres said in a statement. “More than half of my team is Hispanic, as are many of our guests.”

    Trump isn’t going to let the chef go without a fight, though. Donald Trump Jr., Trump’s son told The Washington Post he and his father “will not hesitate to take legal action” if Andres fails to fulfill their contract.

    As part of that contract, Andres will be prevented from opening a competing restaurant in the D.C. area and he may still have to pay rent to the Trumps for the entirety of their 10 year contract.

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