Donald Trump will give a speech on immigration Wednesday, a week after his use of the word “softening” perplexed voters and upset some Republicans.
The GOP presidential nominee announced his upcoming “major speech” on Twitter on Sunday, saying it would take place in Arizona, where his campaign is currently searching for an appropriate venue.
Trump may be looking to clear up his position after his statements on immigration last week set off a firestorm in the media. The candidate had told Fox News’ Sean Hannity last Tuesday that “there could certainly be a softening, because we’re not looking to hurt people.”
“We want people—we have some great people in this country,” he said.
The next day, Trump clarified to Hannity that there would still be “no amnesty” for undocumented immigrants, but add that “we work with them.”
Several Hispanic supporters who met with the candidate last weekend also suggested he was open to shifting his stance on immigration reform, Fortune previously reported. The outpour of a “softening” Trump led many to wonder what it meant for his pledge to deport 11 million illegal immigrants.
“I don’t know who he’s getting it from, but the idea that his base is not going to mind is nonsense. And the idea that it helps him with anyone is nonsense,” said Ann Coulter, one of Trump’s most avid supporters.
Asked by CNN’s Anderson Cooper, Trump responded, “I don’t think it’s a softening … I’ve had people say it’s a hardening, actually.”
“You know it’s a process,” he said. “You can’t take 11 [million] at one time and just say, ‘Boom, you’re gone.’”
Trump’s campaign manager Kellyanne Conway has been emphasizing that the so-called ”softening” is “more [about] approach than policy.”
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Indiana Gov. Mike Pence also defended his running mate on Sunday, saying that Trump had been “absolutely consistent” on immigration and that undocumented immigrants would have “no path to legalization.”
“People who want to gain legal status—you heard Donald Trump say again and again—will have to leave this country,” he said.