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All Hell Broke Loose After the Owners of This Mexican Restaurant Showed Support for Trump

Thanks to the sign and Trump’s singling out of Betty at the rally, the Rivas’s restaurant has become the focal point of a political shitshow, with both Trump lovers and haters taking sides.
Photo via Flickr user Guanatos Gwyn

Last Saturday at a rally in Tucson, Arizona, presidential candidate Donald Trump saw something he probably never thought he'd ever see: Someone in the audience was holding up a sign that said "Latinos Support D. Trump." The candidate was so taken aback that he excitedly called the woman holding the sign up onto the stage with him.

Trump howled, "Look at that! Latinooooooos! I love you, darling! Come on over here. Get her up here. I love her. I've fallen in love. Melania, I've fallen in love with her!"


As far as we know, Trump didn't in fact dump his supermodel wife for the enthusiastic Latina, but he did change her life. And not necessarily for the better.

The sign-wielding woman turned out to be one Betty Rivas. She and her husband, Jorge, own Sammy's Mexican Grill in Catalina, Arizona. She is from Mexico and her husband is from El Salvador; the couple has spent several decades building their business.

Thanks to the sign and Trump's singling out of Betty at the rally, the Rivas's restaurant has become the focal point of a political shitshow, with both Trump lovers and haters taking sides. A flood of Yelp reviews, marked possibly unreliable by Yelp, reflects the good, the bad, and the ugly of the 2016 presidential campaign.


Rivas says she is facing boycotts of her restaurant and death threats from Trump haters. On the other hand, she and the restaurant and are also the subject of plenty of adulation and applause from Trump lovers.

Rivas claims she and her husband attended rallies for both Bernie Sanders and Trump when the candidates swung through Tucson this week. She says it is just "such a coincidence" that her appearance at Trump's rally is the one that "caused controversy."

We called Sammy's Mexican Grill earlier today and spoke with Jorge Rivas. He told us, "Going to the rally, we were just exercising our freedom of expression or freedom of movement. Every person has the right to go wherever they like without being told that you cannot go there."


Rivas says he appreciates the freedoms of his adopted country and claims that those who are negatively targeting his restaurant, "do not appreciate the freedom we have in the States." He continued, "They're just being ignorant. Just because someone goes to a rally, they shouldn't face all this negativity."

Arizona restaurant owner threatened for 'Latinos Support D. Trump' sign

— FOX & Friends (@foxandfriends) March 23, 2016

Despite Trump's negative statements about Mexicans in America—he has said Mexico "doesn't send its best" to America but instead sends criminals and rapists—Rivas is not put off. He told us, "Just because we may look like Latinos on the outside doesn't mean that we have to act, walk, and think the same way as everyone else. We're different."

Nevertheless, Rivas is not willing to concede that Trump is the candidate of choice for him or his wife: "Just because we were at the rally with the sign doesn't mean that we support Trump."

Which brings a question to our minds: What could a sign that says "Latinos Support D. Trump" possibly mean other than that the sign holder supports Trump?

One answer: It could mean a whole lot of trouble for a Mexican restaurant and its Latino owners.