On Tuesday, the first lady of the United States apologized for comparing Hispanic Americans to tacos, convenience stores, and flowers.
On Monday, Jill Biden told the audience at the “Latinx IncluXion Luncheon” that the diversity of the Hispanic community was “as distinct as the bodegas of the Bronx, as beautiful as the blossoms of Miami, and as unique as the breakfast tacos here in San Antonio.”
After much backlash — including an official denouncement from the National Association of Hispanic Journalists (NAHJ), which pointedly told Biden, “We are not tacos” — the first lady issued an apology via Twitter.
“The First Lady apologizes that her words conveyed anything but pure admiration and love for the Latino community,” Michael LaRosa, press secretary to the first lady and special assistant to the president, tweeted.
During her remarks on Monday, the first lady appeared to misspeak, mispronouncing the word “bodegas.” Bodegas are popular corner stores found throughout New York City that provide a range of food and household products.
At a "Latinx IncluXion" conference, Jill Biden says the Hispanic community is as "unique" as tacos.pic.twitter.com/Vb5wJyYGWB
— RNC Latinos (@RNCLatinos) July 11, 2022
NAHJ blasted Biden for her comments, saying, “NAHJ encourages Dr. Biden and her speech writing team to take the time in the future to better understand the complexities of our people and our communities.”
“Our heritage as Latinos is shaped by various diasporas, cultures & food traditions. Do not reduce us to stereotypes,” the group added.
NAHJ encourages @FLOTUS & her communications team to take time to better understand the complexities of our people & communities.
We are not tacos.
Our heritage as Latinos is shaped by various diasporas, cultures & food traditions.
Do not reduce us to stereotypes. pic.twitter.com/KQIq5gwsht
— NAHJ (@NAHJ) July 12, 2022
This is not the first time Ms. Biden, who earned a doctor of education degree, has butchered the Spanish language.
In 2021 while speaking to a handful of Californian farmers, Biden enthusiastically told the crowd, “Si, se pwodway!” while attempting to say, “Si, se puede!” or “Yes, we can!”
a. Why is the doctor screaming at a crowd of 8 people on a lawn?
b. What does “si, se pwodway” mean?pic.twitter.com/HDOAHTEe4v
— Steve Cortes (@CortesSteve) April 1, 2021
In reaction to Biden’s latest comments, Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX)’s senior communications advisor Steve Guest tweeted, “This isn’t Veep. Which White House speechwriter just won a bet for getting the First Lady to say something like this?” while referring to the political comedy starring Julia Louis-Dreyfus.
Jill Biden just said Hispanics are as “unique” as tacos.
This isn’t Veep. Which White House speechwriter just won a bet for getting the First Lady to say something like this?pic.twitter.com/DXfJgYz0g5
— Steve Guest (@SteveGuest) July 11, 2022
The Texas senator also mocked Biden for her comments, tweeting, “Personally, I’m a chorizo, egg & cheese.
Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) also embraced the comparison and changed his Twitter avatar to a photo of an actual taco.
— Marco Rubio (@marcorubio) July 12, 2022
Texas GOP Congressional candidate Irene Armendariz-Jackson also blasted the first lady for her remarks.
“Jill Biden came to Texas to tell the Hispanic community that we’re as ‘unique as breakfast tacos,'” Armendariz-Jackson tweeted. “The fact that someone actually approved her to say that line in her speech and that NO ONE saw an issue with it is wild. They’re going to be at a 5% Hispanic approval rating soon.”
Jill Biden came to Texas to tell the Hispanic community that we’re as “unique as breakfast tacos”.
The fact that someone actually approved her to say that line in her speech and that NO ONE saw an issue with it is wild.
They’re going to be at a 5% Hispanic approval rating soon.
— Irene Armendariz-Jackson For Congress (@ArmendarizDis16) July 12, 2022