In a statement, Univision CEO Randy Falco, a former top executive at NBC, called Trump’s treatment of Ramos at a press conference Tuesday in Dubuque, Iowa, “beneath contempt,” and suggested the real-estate mogul, now a leading Republican candidate for U.S. president, needed to develop a thicker hide if he was interested in courting the press as his campaign efforts continue.
“As a presidential candidate, Mr. Trump is going to get tough questions from the press and has to answer them. Jorge Ramos is one the most professional, dedicated and respected journalists I have seen or worked with in my 40 years in media. He always asks hard questions of candidates and elected officials, regardless of party or issue,” said Falco. “Mr. Trump demonstrated complete disregard for him and for the countless Hispanics whom Jorge seeks to represent through press questions that are at the heart of the First Amendment.”
Ramos was escorted out of the press conference briefly after asking Trump a line of questioning without being called first. Ramos was later let back into the event.
The exchange could be cause for concern for the Trump campaign. Univision is the biggest broadcaster of content to U.S. Hispanics, a demographic that is growing in the United States. In addition to its flagship broadcast outlet, the company is a co-owner of Fusion, a new cable network geared toward a millennial audience and the UniMas broadcast network. In recent years Univision has begun to challenge some of the English-language broadcast networks in viewers 18-49 — the demographic most coveted by advertisers.
Trump and Univision have been battling for several weeks. In June Univision canceled its telecast of the Miss USA pageant, which had been a joint venture of Trump’s company and Comcast’s NBCUniversal. The broadcaster cited remarks Trump had made about immigrants from Mexico.
Ramos has a long history with Hispanic viewers and is looked upon as one of the more influential newscasters among that audience.