Rocky Chavez near the Oceanside Pier. Campaign photo

Real estate mogul and Republican Presidential Candidate Donald Trump drew pointed criticism from a prominent California Republican on Wednesday.

Assemblymember Rocky Chávez, a retired Marine colonel and Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate, said in a statement that he was saddened by Trump’s comments about Mexican immigrants.

Donald Trump. Photo by Gage Skidmore via Wikimedia Commons

“It saddens me that the narrative being set for Republicans at a national level can be initiated by someone who has never been elected,” said Chavez. “We owe it to our nation to welcome immigrants with open arms and to reform our current broken immigration system.”

Chavez, a former Oceanside city councilman, added that “immigration was a catalyst of the American dream in the past and will be the key to the future.”

In his first campaign speech last month, Trump described Mexican immigrants as criminals and rapists.

“When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best,” he said. “They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems (to) us. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists.”

Since then, Univision, NBC and Macy’s have ended business relationships with Trump, who has nevertheless doubled down on his anti-Mexican comments.

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Chris Jennewein

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.