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to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, October 21, 2016 - Volume 44 Issue 43
Las Vegas Culinary Union builds wall of taco trucks around Trump hotel
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Las Vegas Culinary Union builds wall of taco trucks around Trump hotel

by Mike Andrew - SGN Staff Writer

The Las Vegas Culinary Union, longtime nemesis of Donald Trump, built a 'wall' of taco trucks outside the Trump International Hotel on October 19, as Trump squared off against Hillary Clinton in the third and last of their scheduled debates.

The action mocks Trump's campaign theme of building an immigrant-proof wall along the country's border with Mexico, as well as Trump surrogate Marco Gutierrez, who warned that there will be 'taco trucks on every corner' if the wall isn't built.

'We're reminding Mr. Trump that immigrant workers here and across the country will be watching the debate and voting in November,' said Yvanna Cancela, the political director for the predominantly Latino and immigrant union.

The Culinary Union has held 10 rallies outside Trump's hotel since workers voted to unionize last December. They charge that Trump is refusing to bargain with them, in violation of federal labor laws.

The union was joined by American Bridge, Latino Victory Project, PLAN Action, iAmerica Action, Center for Community Change Action, For Our Future, and 50 immigrant advocacy activists from Los Angeles.

Democrat Ruben Kihuen, who is running to represent Las Vegas's 4th Congressional District in the US House of Representatives, also attended the protest.

'We're protesting Donald Trump's hotel here in Vegas, where a majority of workers voted to unionize, and shamefully Trump has failed to sit down at the table with them,' Kihuen told BuzzFeed News.

'As he has demonized Hispanics, women, veterans, and the disabled, we will send him and those who supported him, like my opponent, Congressman Cresent Hardy, a message that we're here and we vote.'

'Everyone coming together is really about sending a message that we reject Trump and the politics of hate,' said iAmerica president Rocio Saenz. Latino and Asian-Pacific Islander voters will turn out in large numbers to repudiate Trump in November, she added.

The Culinary Union was largely responsible for Hillary Clinton's victory in the February Democratic caucuses in Nevada, a victory that blunted Bernie Sanders' momentum and arguably gave Clinton's campaign a new lease on life.

Reportedly at the request of Senate Democratic leader and union ally Harry Reid, the union mobilized its members to attend the caucuses for Clinton. Currently Clinton enjoys a 5.5-point lead in the state, according to the Real Clear Politics poll of polls.

The 60,000-member Culinary Union is affiliated with UNITE HERE, the hospitality and food service union, and is the biggest union in Nevada.

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