Showbiz figures are still grappling with Donald Trump’s victory, but at a certain point the shock will fade and celebrity activists and industry donors will begin to look at what is next.
On the latest “PopPolitics” on SiriusXM’s political channel POTUS, Rita Moreno and MALDEF president and general counsel Thomas Saenz talk about the Latino vote and the role of entertainment in the 2016 election.
“Obviously all the fundraisers and shows in the world didn’t help Hillary,” Moreno says. “Ultimately it is not about that. It is about educating the people to learn to recognize the patterns of some very bad things going on politically and about morality. And to talk about values, we have a right to reclaim that word also. It is not a question of the entertainment industry as much as the people within that industry who might in some ways be able to help.”
Moreno was honored on Thursday night by MALDEF — the Latino civil rights organization. Their executive director, Thomas Saenz, says that although an exit poll showed Trump getting 29% of support with Latinos, which was on par with Mitt Romney, another poll from Latino decisions showed 18%.
Either number, Saenz says, “is an extremely low level of support for Trump, and that is, I think, a glimmer of hope. He is going to have to govern differently, because I guarantee that this week was the last time anybody can be elected or reelected with such a low level of support in the Latino community. If he doesn’t increase his support in the Latino community, he will be a one-term president.”
Moreno says that she was not shocked or surprised at the outcome.
“Somehow my bones kept telling me something that the polls weren’t,” she said.
“I’m filled with hope, and the notion that you simply have to keep moving forward. And you have to keep on the side of good and of morality, which I think is severely and sorely lacking in this new administration to come.”
She does think that Hillary Clinton’s campaign overdid it with the use of celebrities on the campaign trail “when push comes to shove, and unfortunately, a lot of people in middle America don’t think of entertainers as people who have feelings and brains and a political sense.”
The Second Coming of Reagan?
Tim Naftali, clinical associate professor of public service at New York University, talks about some of the comparisons of Donald Trump to the last entertainer to occupy the Oval Office, Ronald Reagan. Reagan was a great communicator, and Trump may be too, but they differ vastly in the experience they bring to Washington. Reagan was governor of California and ran for president twice before he won the election in 1980. Trump has never held elective office. And both face vastly different atmospheres in D.C. Reagan had to contend with Democratic majorities in Congress; Trump will face a far friendlier atmosphere.
Too Much Hollywood for Hillary?
Nikki Schwab of Daily Mail and David Cohen of Variety talk about the election aftermath, and whether Hillary Clinton’s use of celebrity ultimately worked against her. Schwab says that voters got tired of people telling them what to do — whether that was a newspaper editorial, entertainment figure or even a popular politician.
“PopPolitics,” hosted by Variety’s Ted Johnson, airs from 11-noon PT/2-3 pm ET on Thursdays on SiriusXM’s political channel POTUS. It also is available on demand.