Networks could learn a thing or two from tonight's Univision immigration town hall

Blog ››› ››› KARL FRISCH

Tonight at 10:00 p.m. ET, Univision will air a one-hour, commercial-free town hall forum on immigration reform. From a network press release:

The Univision Network announced today the participants confirmed for the network's town hall on immigration "Inmigración: Un Debate Nacional." Some of the country's most respected figures on immigration law and public policy, representatives of national Hispanic organizations, members of the immigrant community, Arizona state and local government officials, a White House representative, and members of Congress will participate in the event which will provide a platform for both sides to discuss key issues surrounding immigration policy in the U.S. The commercial-free special "Inmigración: Un Debate Nacional" airs LIVE on Friday, May 14, 2010 at 10pm ET/PT (9 pm Central) on the Univision Network.

Over on the New York Times' Media Decoder blog, Brian Stelter asks an interesting question (emphasis added):

The network is holding a prime-time debate, "Inmigración: Un Debate Nacional," about proposed immigration reforms on Friday. It is also releasing a poll on immigration conducted in conjunction with the Associated Press. For a sense of whether this is significant, just try to remember the last time the country's English language networks turned over an hour of prime time for a public affairs debate that did not involve presidential candidates.

I tried to remember just such an occasion but came up blank.

The networks would likely say that they provide a weekly forum on issues of the day, like immigration, on their vaunted Sunday shows. But, as we've noted, only ABC's This Week has any sort of quality control in place to make sure those programs are accurate.

It's time for the other networks (ABC, CBS, CNN, Fox/Fox News, NBC News/MSNBC) to step things up a bit.

Posted In
Immigration, Immigration Reform
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