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Harry Reid: GOP Let An "Anti-Latino" Movement Fester Within Its Ranks

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid will blame anti-Latino policies and obstructionism to President Obama for Donald Trump.

Posted on March 16, 2016, at 8:00 a.m. ET

Gerald Herbert / AP

MIAMI — Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid will blame Republicans for creating Donald Trump and argue that "anti-Latino" policies and stances have become a hallmark of the embattled party, according to planned remarks he will make at the Center for American Progress Action Fund, obtained by BuzzFeed News.

"The Republican establishment has allowed a decades old anti-Latino movement to fester within its ranks," Reid will say in a speech titled "The Rise of Trump and the Progressive Response," pointing to an "anti-immigrant underbelly" as the most salient example of how the party has abandoned policy for "fear and resentment politics."

Reid had planned to make the speech on Wednesday. But President Obama's Supreme Court nomination scuttled those plans, and it is unclear when Reid's fiery speech will be made.

Reid, who is retiring and has delighted in taking on Republicans during his tenure, will also seek to lump all Republicans together. He will invoke not just Trump, but also hardline Iowa Rep. Steve King who endorsed Ted Cruz and Mitt Romney's "self-deportation" stance that hurt him in the 2012 election.

"Republican leaders looked on approvingly while extremists like Congressman Steve King used repugnant language against Latinos, such as likening DREAMers to drug mules," Reid will say.

"Together with well-organized anti-immigrant groups, Republicans have pushed through hateful legislation that allowed for warrantless arrests and made it a crime for Latinos to walk outside without their papers."

Reid has endorsed Catherine Cortez Masto, the former Nevada attorney general, who is seeking to become the first Latina elected to the U.S. Senate, as his chosen replacement.

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