CNN's Beckel Claims GOPers Call Hispanics 'Wetbacks,' Hillary Is Wife of 'First Black Prez'

Appearing as a guest on Friday's New Day, liberal CNN political commentator Bob Beckel claimed that Republicans call Hispanics by the derogatory term "wetbacks" as he discussed whether Bernie Sanders will be able to win the Hispanic vote in the Nevada caucuses against Hillary Clinton.

He also recalled Bill Clinton as the "first black President" as he dismissed Sanders's chances of beating Hillary Clinton with black voters in South Carolina.

After predicting that Sanders has a better chance of winning Hispanics in Nevada than blacks in South Carolina, Beckel ended up making his "wetback" charge against Republicans without offering any examples:

But, you know, the fact is that the Republicans, I can't believe it, but they continue to dish up the Hispanic vote to the Democrats. I mean, Hispanics ought to be -- George W. Bush got 44 percent of them -- because they are military-oriented, they're family-oriented, all things Republicans talk about, and yet now they call them wetbacks and all the rest of that stuff and drive them away...

A bit earlier, after guest co-host John Berman asked if Hillary Clinton can make changes in her campaign quickly enough to respond to Sanders's recent successes, the liberal commentator predicted that it will still be difficult for the Vermont Senator to win because black voters will still support the Clintons, as he invoked the "first black President" label of her husband. Beckel:

Her problem, I mean, I don't know what's going to happen with the FBI and her email, but if you take that out of the equation, Bernie Sanders's road to the nomination is so narrow, it's like balancing on a gymnist's bar of two inches because he has to wade himself through until he gets to the Midwest. And the idea that Bernie Sanders is going to make a big dent in black voters, they don't know him, and they tend to feel more comfortable if they know you. And Bill Clinton, still, whatever else you think about him, he is considered to be the first black President. Remember that?

Below is a transcript of the relevant portion of the Friday, February 12. New Day on CNN:

8:31 a.m.
JOHN BERMAN: For Hillary Clinton to do this now, though, you've been in many campaigns where you've made changes, you've adjusted mid stream. Can she adjust quickly enough to do what she needs to do?

BOB BECKEL, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Oh, yeah. Her problem, I mean, I don't know what's going to happen with the FBI and her email, but if you take that out of the equation, Bernie Sanders's road to the nomination is so narrow, it's like balancing on a gymnist's bar of two inches because he has to wade himself through until he gets to the Midwest. And the idea that Bernie Sanders is going to make a big dent in black voters, they don't know him, and they tend to feel more comfortable if they know you. And Bill Clinton, still, whatever else you think about him, he is considered to be the first black President. Remember that?

ALISYN CAMEROTA: Yes.

BERMAN: Tony Morrison.

(...)

BERMAN: You know, when you talk about strange, we have a strange bump in the road on the way to South Carolina for the Democrats, and that's the state of Nevada. You have the Nevada caucuses, which are a weird animal, Bob, in politics. First of all, it's a caucus, it's a relatively new thing. No one really knows how to run there successfully. I was talking to some people on the ground there, political operatives, who say, "Look, Bernie, maybe he won't be able to win, but he is making inroads. He is going to be able to compete in Nevada."

BECKEL: He's got a much better opportunity to break into the Hispanic community than he would in the black community, for example. They are a relatively new voting block, they are growing in huge numbers, and Bernie has been pretty good with Hispanic voters. But, you know, the fact is that the Republicans, I can't believe it, but they continue to dish up the Hispanic vote to the Democrats. I mean, Hispanics ought to be -- George W. Bush got 44 percent of them -- because they are military-oriented, they're family-oriented, all things Republicans talk about, and yet now they call them wetbacks and all the rest of that stuff and drive them away, so, but I think Bernie has got an opportunity there, sure.

Brad Wilmouth
Brad Wilmouth is a contributing blogger to NewsBusters