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Monday, September 09, 2013

Obama snubs Spanish-language media for Syria interview

As part of making the case for action in Syria, The White House invited anchors from ABC, CBS, Fox, NBC, CNN and PBS who each got 6 minutes with the president.  Univision was notably snubbed despite having higher ratings than all the networks in the under 50 demographic in the July ratings.

Univision released a statement communicating its displeasure saying:

What happens in Syria is important to Univision News’ audience. As the fastest growing demographic in the U.S. the decisions that are made by our government on issues like this one have a direct impact in their lives and their future. The U.S. Hispanic community has the right to be well informed and receive all the news and information they need from the news source they trust the most. It’s disappointing to see the lack of interest to reach our audience on this important issue.

Univision anchor Jorge Ramos tweeted several comments about the snub.

While many Hispanics do watch the English-language networks, far more watch Spanish-language news.  The Pew Hispanic center in August released a study showing the Spanish is the most spoken foreign language in U.S. homes, even among-non-Hispanics.

The White House needs to get into the habit of including Spanish language media -- notably TV with Univision and Telemundo -- in its standard approach to the president's availability.  Hispanics will see this as a snub and this type of treatment is what Hispanics typically see when it comes to taking them for granted or being an after-thought.

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