Celebrity chef José Andrés says he confronted Trump in 2016 about ‘disparaging immigrants’
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Celebrity chef José Andrés recounts in a new interview how he confronted President TrumpDonald John TrumpAverage tax refunds down double-digits, IRS data shows White House warns Maduro as Venezuela orders partial closure of border with Colombia Trump administration directs 1,000 more troops to Mexican border MORE about his comments on immigrants during the 2016 presidential campaign, saying his "success is on the shoulders of those immigrants."

"I remember him calling me and telling me, 'José, we're winning, we're winning,' " Andrés told Democratic strategist David Axelrod on his podcast, "The Axe Files." "I'm like, 'Mr. Trump, I'm not running on your ticket.' "

" 'I only want to open a successful restaurant and you with your comments, you are disparaging the same immigrants and Hispanics I am. I owe myself to those same Hispanics. My success is on the shoulders of those immigrants.' "

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The celebrity chef has been a vocal critic of Trump ever since the real estate mogul declared his candidacy for the White House in 2015 in a speech decrying illegal immigration. 

Shortly after that announcement, Andrés pulled out of an agreement to open a new restaurant in Trump's Washington, D.C. hotel, saying the candidate's remarks made it "impossible" for him to move forward with the deal.

That prompted the Trump Organization to sue for breach of contract. The lawsuit was settled last year

Since then, Andrés had continued to speak critically of Trump, particularly about the president's rhetoric on immigration and his decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.

Trump announced in September that he would end the Obama-era program, which temporarily shielded certain young immigrants who came to the U.S. illegally as children from deportation. 

"The reality is [we] have 11 million undocumented," Andrés told Axelrod. "They are part of the DNA of America. We have 'Dreamers,' super prepared Americans, they came here when they were babies. Immigration and immigration reform is not a problem for us to solve. It's an opportunity for America to see."