If you google “RNC Univision” you get 229,000 results, most of them criticizing the GOP’s decision last month to not include Spanish-language TV channel Univision on its presidential debate schedule. “Republicans need Univision”, decries Adrian Carrasquillo. “Univision is the country’s fifth-largest TV network, reaching 94 million households,” rattles off Raul Reyes, and on and on.
The simple truth is that Univision is a soap opera and game show outlet, and quite raunchy at that. On World Cup years they score big on soccer, too, which they did last year, hence “reaching 94 million households.”
“But Fausta, Mitt did well in the 2012 Univision debate,” you’ll say. Indeed he did, but not without being interrupted multiple times by Jorge Ramos, Univision’s Mexican anchorman and pro-illegal immigration/open borders advocate.
You may recall that Ramos was asking Pres. Obama about white privilege last December, thereby piling on the irony, considering how Ramos made $75million (US dollars, not pesos) in combined earnings in 2014 alone, and is as white as the next Swede.
The Univision news shows feature sensationalist headlines read for the most part by young nubile women showing a lot of leg and cleavage, for which I am in the wrong demographic. Lots of gruesome photos and videos, too, and, when possible, the perpetrator’s mother tearfully declaring “he’s such a good son.” In fact, the last time I sat through an entire news program from Univision was during the 2012 presidential debate.
“But the RNC should reach out to Latinos,” goes the argument. Again, Univision fails, as Ruben Navarrete points out,
Univision has long tried to have its flan and eat it too. It pretends to be the network “for” Hispanics, but it’s not owned or controlled “by” Hispanics. In 2006, Univision Communications was acquired for $13.7 billion by a consortium led by Saban Capital Group. Its founder, billionaire Haim Saban, is a prominent supporter of Hillary Clinton, and his wife, Cheryl, was appointed by President Obama as a U.S. representative to the United Nations.
Of course Univision spokesman Jose Zamora would have you believe that “Anyone who wants to reach and engage Hispanics will have to do it through Univision,” ignoring the fact that, as Navarrete mentioned, 80 percent of Latinos consume their news in English. Saban and his partners are now asking $20 billion for Univision (an amount higher than the GDP of a dozen countries in our hemisphere, if one is to believe Wikipedia); no wonder they want to be perceived as the gateway to engaging the Latino audience.
Yes, the RNC must reach out to Latinos, but they must do it in the communities, and emphasizing the positive, American values that we all share, not while being browbeaten by advocates passing as newsmen when Univision is not showing soaps and soccer.
If all the RNC wants is top ratings, they’d do better at ESPN.
Fausta Rodriguez Wertz writes on U.S. and Latin American politics, news, and culture at Fausta’s Blog.