"Dump Trump" Is Trending Days Before Trump Is Set to Host SNL

October 21st 2015

Alex Mierjeski

GOP front-runner and real estate mogul Donald Trump is scheduled to host Saturday Night Live on November 7, but at least a few people are not happy about it.

And on Tuesday, the candidate responded to the growing "dump Trump" movement, saying that not only is he used to digs from immigrant groups, but also that the appearance could be mutually beneficial to both himself and NBC, which broadcasts the show.

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"I have fantastic respect for Hispanics," he told CNN host Alisyn Camerota. "I actually think I will win the Hispanics. ... I have great respect for Mexico, but they're taking advantage of us," he said, noting that the controversy over his upcoming SNL appearance and hate-watching viewers would "only drive the ratings up higher."

Here's a video of the interview. Skip to the 14:45 mark to hear the SNL questions.

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After the show was announced, Trump and NBC, received backlash for the about-face with the candidate (remember: following some characteristically colorful remarks about immigrants by the businessman, the network announced in June that it had cut ties with Trump). But in the last week, numerous immigrant rights groups spawned a concerted backlash to the appearance, imploring the network not to make light of the candidate's comments.

"On November 7, it won't just be Donald Trump on the SNL stage. He will be standing with all of his supporters who want to purge America of Latinos and immigrants and aren't afraid to use any means necessary," wrote the immigrant group America's Voice in a memo. "Racism is not funny, and NBC should not try to bill it as either comedy [or] entertainment. NBC and SNL are rewarding Trump—and mainstreaming the hate that powers his campaign. That's dangerous for immigrants and for the country."

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Other groups, including the National Hispanic Foundation for the Arts and the National Hispanic Leadership Agenda are on board with the boycott. Those groups sent a letter last week to SNL executive producer Lorne Michaels and NBC CEO Stephen Burke explaining that they were "flabbergasted," CNN reported. "Allowing Trump to host SNL will legitimize and validate his anti-Latino comments," the letter said.

The sentiment was echoed Tuesday by Illinois Representative Luis V. Gutierrez (D), who sent a letter to Burke and another NBC executive explaining that the appearance would be a "level of endorsement that says to America that every hateful and racist thing Donald Trump has said since the moment he launched his campaign is acceptable and no big deal."

"Well," Gutierrez wrote, "it is a big deal."

On Monday, Trump said he was confident NBC would not drop him, adding on Tuesday that immigrant rights organizations like the ones targeting him were full of "scammers," and that "[t]hey go around and look for money from people," Trump said. "They only care about themselves."

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Trump hosted SNL back in 2004 and has been played by a number of cast members, including Darrell HammondPhil Hartman and Jason Sudeikis.

This season he's been portrayed by Taran Killam.