During the first Republican presidential debate, Trump said illegal immigration "wasn’t a subject that was on anybody’s mind until I brought it up at my announcement."
On "Hardball" Monday, Matthews concurred, saying the reality TV star's forthrightness on immigration is the reason the media is covering him so heavily.
"He is the only candidate who, people believe, is actually saying something," Matthews said. "Look, if illegal immigration doesn't bother you or doesn't even grab you as an issue, you might pay attention to those who it does bother. People who care about illegal immigration now have one candidate who is speaking out about it."
Matthews added that he hopes Trump's "over-the-top" proposal to deport all undocumented immigrants will cause "reasonable politicians" to come up with more feasible solutions to the issue.
But contrary to Matthews' statement, Trump did not invent talking about immigration, PolitiFact notes. The issue has received substantial attention from politicians and the media for years, though recent legislative proposals to address the problem have been stymied by gridlock in Congress.