OPINION

Rick Sanchez: The Cuban-American billionaire who's taking on Donald Trump

Mike Fernandez is a billionaire. We need more Mike Fernandez’s. We don’t need more like him because he’s a billionaire — far from it. We need more Fernandez’s because he’s a thought leader in our business sector, who is willing to take on the menace of hate and demagoguery that is afflicting our politics. 

We can’t rely on our media. It’s too conflicted to challenge the goose providing them with ratings gold. Neither can we rely on professional politicians. They are too scared to burden themselves with principles — not if it means having to engage the schoolyard bully and possibly lose. Frightening stuff! 

Fernandez’s full-page ad is apparently bothering Trump, because he’s firing back. The candidate who has insulted blacks, Hispanics, women, veterans and now suggests that Muslims should be barred from entering the U.S. is threatening to sue Fernandez for – I guess – daring to not like him. 

- Rick Sanchez

Mike Fernandez is among the most admired and respected business leaders in America. The health care magnate has achieved much more than Donald Trump, because he’s built his fortune not with his daddy’s money, rather from nothing. He is a conservative Republican and he’s outraged. So much so that he’s purchased a full-page ad in the Miami Herald calling Trump a “narcissistic bully-ionaire with a hunger to be adored.” 

He compares him to history’s bloodiest demagogues.

Fernandez, who arrived in the United States penniless at the age of 12, served in the U.S. army, got a job selling insurance, went on to create some of the largest health insurance companies in America and has since founded MBF Healthcare Partners, a private equity firm in Coral Gables, is genuinely angry. He’s as angry as many of America’s business thought leaders when it comes to the damage that Donald Trump’s rhetoric and ideas can cause for America. But unlike many of his peers, he’s willing to go after Trump.

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“You have no idea how furious I am with my friends in the Republican Party who have embraced this guy,” Fernandez said.

Why is it so important for Mike Fernandez to step up right now against Trump? Cliché for emphasis; because the business of America is business. And while most Americans have been schooled to believe that the only opinion makers that matter are talking heads on TV, Op Ed writers, politicians and entertainers, more often it’s business leaders who succeed by earnestly following the rules of the free market who direct the course of our democracy. 

They understand that the viability of our economy depends not on fear, but on confidence. It depends not on throwing people out, but rather allowing for and attracting new blood to bolster their workforce. It depends not on knee-jerk decisions, exaggerations or short-term solutions, but rather on metrics-based analyses that lead to market growth. 

Even more importantly, they are more adept at spotting a fake, a phony and carnival act like Donald Trump, because they’ve seen many a Donald Trumps come and go in their respective fields. 

Fernandez’s full-page ad is apparently bothering Trump, because he’s firing back. The candidate who has insulted blacks, Hispanics, women, veterans and now suggests that Muslims should be barred from entering the U.S. is threatening to sue Fernandez for – I guess – daring to not like him. 

In Fernandez, Trump may have met his match, because soon after receiving the letter, Fernandez Trumpishly posted it on Facebook for the entire world to see.

A Cuban exile who struggled his whole life and who unlike Trump, has never had to resort to bankruptcy court to get ahead, Fernandez is still not backing down. Here is part of the statement he provided me today: “I fully stand behind my comments regarding Donald Trump.” 

“The problem with Donald Trump is that so much about him is unstable – his positions, his rhetoric – and I am afraid this country and our world cannot bounce back if someone like him becomes president. The potential damage to our nation and our future could be catastrophic,” Fernandez added.

Fernandez is convinced the last thing America needs is another Donald Trump. I would suggest that what America needs is more Mike Fernandez’s.  

Rick Sanchez is a contributor for Fox News Latino.

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