Jill Biden apologizes for comments comparing diversity among Latinos to 'breakfast tacos'

Jill Biden
US First Lady Jill Biden.STEFANI REYNOLDS/AFP via Getty Images
  • First Lady Jill Biden issued an apology over remarks she made in a Monday speech.

  • "The First Lady apologizes that her words conveyed anything but pure admiration and love for the Latino community," her spokesperson tweeted.

  • Biden faced some criticism after she compared diversity among Latinos to being "unique" as "breakfast tacos."

First Lady Jill Biden on Tuesday issued an apology for comments she made in a Monday speech in San Antonio, Texas, saying that diversity among Latinos is as "unique" as "breakfast tacos."

"The First Lady apologizes that her words conveyed anything but pure admiration and love for the Latino community," a Biden spokesperson, Michael LaRosa, tweeted.

The apology comes after Biden received some criticism over her remarks given during an annual conference hosted by UnidosUS, a Latino advocacy nonprofit. The first lady made the diversity comparison as she was praising Raúl Yzaguirre, a civil rights activist and former president of UnidosUS for 30 years. President Joe Biden awarded him the presidential medal of freedom earlier this month.

"Raul helped build this organization with the understanding that the diversity of this community, 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, is your strength," she said.

The first lady's comments were met with some cheers from the audience, though she drew some backlash online. The National Association of Hispanic Journalists took to Twitter with a statement condemning Biden's comments.

"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 communities," the group said. "We are not tacos. Our heritage as Latinos is shaped by a variety of diasporas, cultures and food traditions and should not be reduced to a stereotype."

Several Republicans also seized on the comments.

"No wonder Hispanics are fleeing the Democratic Party!" GOP Rep. Andy Biggs of Arizona tweeted on Monday along with a clip of Biden's remarks.

The president of UnidosUS came to the first lady's defense and mocked Biggs.

"Rep. Andy Biggs is criticizing @FLOTUS remarks at #UnidosUS22 Conference. Andy Biggs?! The guy who demonizes immigrants and defends Confederate statues? Give me a break," Janet Murguía tweeted.

"So honored to host @FLOTUS at our Annual Conference today in San Antonio. She has been a great educator in, and a great amiga to, our community for years. Privileged to call her a friend," Murguía wrote in an earlier tweet.


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