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  • La Opinión Reports On Exclusion Of Latinos In The Media

    Blog ››› ››› MEDIA MATTERS STAFF

    La Opinión reported on a Media Matters study that found that Latinos made up only a small fraction of guests invited on cable news shows to discuss Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump’s attacks on Judge Gonzalo Curiel’s Mexican heritage. The article featured input from Media Matters Hispanic media researcher Cristina López, who explained that this finding is representative of a larger tendency in the media to marginalize the Latino perspective in their reporting, which could have serious “negative effects” and “perpetuate damaging stereotypes” about Latinos.

    The September 21 report focused on a Media Matters quantitative study of guest diversity on CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC that found that only 11.5 percent of guests discussing Trump’s racist attacks against a Latino judge were Hispanic, while the majority of those discussing the topic -- 88.5 percent -- were non-Hispanic. The article cited previous Media Matters studies that confirmed the media’s “broader pattern” of marginalizing Latinos’ voices “even when the [Latino] community is attacked” and often relegating them to the single issue of immigration.

    Media MattersCristina López pointed out that a failure to effectively include the Latino perspective on issues that affect them “can have negative effects on the narratives that come out of news shows” and explained that “without the inclusion of Latino voices in the discussion of topics of the day, including those that most affect them, we run the risk of having imprecise information that perpetuates damaging stereotypes.” Translated from the September 21 article (emphasis original):

    Latinos are the largest minority in the country and even when the community is attacked, they do not have a voice on cable news networks [to comment] on the electoral bloc’s most pressing topics, according to what a "Media Matters" study reported this Wednesday.


    In statements to this newspaper, researcher Cristina López explained that the low representation of Latinos “can have negative effects on the narrative that come out of news shows.”

    “Without the inclusion of Latino voices in the discussion of topics of the day, including those that most affect them, we run the risk of having imprecise information that perpetuates damaging stereotypes” about Hispanics, she said.

    For López, it’s urgent that TV producers and executives improve the participation of Latinos and other minorities, especially in a hostile environment in which racist attacks have changed the current of the national dialogue.

    “Latinos have demonstrated, with campaigns like #AskMeMás, that they are anxious and capable of discussing issues that affect them most and being part of broader conversations. The ball is in the court of the news channels,” López stated.

    According to Media Matters, the lack of inclusion of Latino voices on national programs is not isolated but rather makes up a part of a broader pattern: after the massacre in a gay club in Orlando (Florida), none of the major cable channels included a significant number of Hispanic guests, despite the fact that 90% of the victims were of Latino origin.

    And an analysis of Sunday shows, in English and Spanish, left proof that Latinos are only sought out to comment about immigration issues, ignoring the diversity of opinions about other topics of life nationally.

    Although much is spoken about the importance of the Latino vote in this election year, the cable channels “rarely include Hispanics” in their news shows, Media Matters said.

  • Journalists Call On Debate Moderators To Fact-Check Candidates

    Journalists: Debate Moderators Should “Be Well-Prepared Enough To Assert The Truth In Real Time”

    ››› ››› NICK FERNANDEZ

    Prior to the first presidential debate between Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton and Republican nominee Donald Trump, journalists are advising the debate moderators to “Be well-prepared enough to assert the truth in real time,” and arguing that a moderator should not “abdicate” their “role as a truth-seeker and a journalist” because moderators “play a constructive and vital role” in presidential debates.

  • The Bar Gets Lower: Media Reinforce Double Standard For Trump Ahead Of First Debate

    ››› ››› TYLER CHERRY

    As the first presidential debate approaches, media figures across the political spectrum are actively lowering the bar for Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, both by setting lower standards themselves and by pushing the lower-standard narrative. Yet at the same time, many media figures are acknowledging that the press is employing a double standard in its treatment of Trump and Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton.

  • Fox Continues To Ignore Investigative Reporting On The Trump Foundation’s Alleged Illegal Activity

    Blog ››› ››› JULIE ALDERMAN

    Fox News spent less than three minutes covering a Washington Post report detailing how Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump “spent more than a quarter-million dollars from his charitable foundation to settle lawsuits that involved the billionaire’s for-profit businesses.” By contrast, CNN spent over 23 minutes on the story, while MSNBC devoted nearly an hour of airtime to the report. Fox News has previously essentially ignored investigations into the Trump Foundation and his business dealings.

    The Washington Post’s David Fahrenthold reported on September 20 that “Trump may have violated laws against ‘self-dealing’ — which prohibit nonprofit leaders from using charity money to benefit themselves or their businesses.” Trump spent $258,000 from the Trump Foundation -- to which he has not personally donated since 2008 -- to settle legal issues involving his for-profit businesses, which Fahrenthold noted on CNN “is against the law.”

    A Media Matters study found that from the time the story was published around 10:27 a.m. on September 20 through 9:00 a.m. on September 21, when the cable news morning shows ended, Fox News spent two minutes and 58 seconds on the report. CNN spent 23 minutes and 52 seconds on it, while MSNBC devoted 56 minutes and 12 seconds to the report. Fox’s flagship evening news program, Special Report, spent merely 12 seconds on the news.

    Fox News’ segments on the report offered few details on the investigation. The longest segment Fox devoted to the report was one minute and 41 seconds on The O’Reilly Factor, in which guest host Bret Baier allowed Trump campaign manager Kellyanne Conway to dispute the report.

    This is not the first time Fox News has omitted coverage of unflattering investigative reports into Trump’s foundation and business practices within a day or two of publication.

    • Fox News entirely ignored a report earlier this month that Trump has apparently broken both the law and IRS rules with his foundation, and he has not donated money to his own foundation since 2008. The report explained that Trump instead lies to other charities and the public by suggesting that the foundation’s donations are his own money. In addition, Trump has spent money from the foundation “to buy himself a gift” on two different occasions..

    • Fox News also failed to cover an illegal campaign contribution from the Trump Foundation to Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi, which “came as Bondi was reviewing whether to investigate fraud allegations against Trump University,” though she never took any action against Trump U.

    • Fox News also neglected to cover a report from Mother Jones revealing that Trump’s modeling agency, Trump Model Management, “profited from using foreign models who came to the United States on tourist visas that did not permit them to work here.”

    At the same time, Fox has scandalized reports about Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton’s associated foundation, claiming she engaged in “pay for play” as secretary of state, despite there being no evidence of wrongdoing. Fox’s own reporting has in fact undermined many of these claims.

    Methodology: Media Matters searched SnapStream for mentions of Trump and foundation or charity on Fox News, MSNBC, and CNN between 10:27 a.m. on September 20 to 9 a.m. on September 21, excluding all mentions that took place between 11 p.m. on September 20 and 5 a.m. on September 21.

  • STUDY: Media Marginalized Latino Voices In Discussing Trump's Attacks On Judge Curiel's Latino Heritage

    Blog ››› ››› DINA RADTKE & CRISTINA LOPEZ Versión en español

    A Media Matters study of guests brought on cable news networks to discuss Donald Trump's attacks on federal Judge Gonzalo Curiel’s Mexican heritage found that Hispanics were critically underrepresented in these discussions, even though Hispanics are disproportionately impacted by the issue. The Republican presidential nominee made repeated racist comments against Judge Curiel between May 27 and June 9, yet Hispanic voices made up a mere 11.5 percent of guests invited to analyze the racially fueled attacks.

    On May 27, Judge Gonzalo Curiel, who is presiding over a lawsuit against Trump over his now-defunct real estate seminars, ordered the release of documents related to fraud allegations against Trump University, and Trump responded with unfounded accusations of bias. He claimed that there was a conflict of interest because Trump proposed to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border and the judge was “Mexican.” The judge, who is of Mexican heritage, was born in Indiana.

    Media and political figures across the political spectrum denounced the racist remarks. Even House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI), who endorsed Trump earlier this year, called Trump’s attack “the textbook definition of racism.” Hispanic media figures, in particular, took issue with Trump’s comments. Yet in covering the topic, cable news networks hosted an alarmingly low number of a Latinos to discuss it, omitting important perspective from the Latino community, which has become increasingly concerned about issues of racial discrimination.

    A Media Matters review of coverage from CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC primetime shows found that Hispanic voices made up only 11.5 percent of the discussion of the topic, while non-Hispanic voices dominated the conversation, making up 88.5 percent.

    The media have a pattern of treating Latinos as a monolithic group focused on the single issue of immigration and excluding them from discussions of issues that may deeply affect their communities. A previous Media Matters study that analyzed the diversity of guests invited to discuss the Pulse Nightclub massacre in Orlando, FL, in which the majority of victims were Hispanic, also confirmed this trend.


    Media Matters searched the Nexis database using the search terms "trump w/50 (curiel or judge or mexican)" for weekday CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC programs airing between 8 pm ET and 11 pm ET from May 27 through June 9 and reviewed the transcripts for segments about Donald Trump's attacks on Judge Curiel. Segments in which two or more participants discussed Curiel were included, with the exception of packaged or live news reports from correspondents. All guests were coded for ethnicity.

    Julie Alderman and Sarah Wasko contributed to this study.

  • ESTUDIO: Los Medios Marginaron Las Voces Latinas Al Discutir Los Ataques De Trump Contra El Origen Latino Del Juez Curiel

    Blog ››› ››› DINA RADTKE & CRISTINA LOPEZ English language version

    Un estudio de Media Matters sobre las personas que las cadenas noticiosas invitaron para hablar de los ataques de Donald Trump hacia la ascendencia mexicana del juez federal Gonzalo Curiel, reveló que los hispanos fueron subrepresentados de manera crítica en estas discusiones, incluso a pesar de que el tema los afecta de manera directa. El nominado presidencial republicano repetidamente hizo comentarios que muchos calificaron de racistas contra el juez Curiel en los días entre el 27 de mayo y el 9 de junio, pero las voces hispanas constituyeron un mero 11.5 por ciento de los invitados que aparecieron analizando los ataques raciales.

    El 27 de mayo, el juez Gonzalo Curiel, quien preside la demanda contra Trump sobre sus ya extintos seminarios de bienes raíces, ordenó hacer públicos los documentos relacionados a las acusaciones de fraude contra Trump University, y Trump respondió acusando al juez de parcialidad sin fundamento alguno. Insistió que era un conflicto de interés ya que Trump ha propuesto construir un muro en la frontera entre EE.UU. y México y el juez es “mexicano.” El juez, que tiene ascendencia mexicana, nació en Indiana.

    Medios y figuras políticas a lo largo del espectro político denunciaron los comentarios racistas. Incluso el Presidente de la Cámara de Representantes Paul Ryan (R-WI), quien anunció su apoyo por Trump este mismo año, calificó el ataque de Trump como “la definición de racismo del libro de texto.” Latinos en los medios, en particular, condenaron los comentarios de Trump. Sin embargo, al cubrir el tema, las cadenas noticiosas de cable invitaron a un número alarmantemente bajo de latinos para discutirlo, omitiendo la importante perspectiva importante de la comunidad latina, que ha demostrado una preocupación creciente con la discriminación racial.

    El análisis de Media Matters de la cobertura del tema durante los programas en hora estelar de CNN, Fox News, y MSNBC encontró que las voces hispanas constituyeron solo un 11.5 por ciento de las discusiones, mientras que las voces no hispanas dominaron con un 88.5 por ciento.

    Los resultados del estudio reflejan el patrón mediático de tratar a los latinos como un grupo monolítico enfocado exclusivamente en el tema migratorio, marginándolos de otros temas que afectan profundamente a sus comunidades. Un estudio previo de Media Matters que analizó la diversidad de invitados invitados a discutir la masacre Pulse Nightclub en Orlando, FL, en que la mayoría de las víctimas fueron hispanas, también confirmó esta tendencia.


    Media Matters buscó el base de datos Nexis usando los términos de búsqueda “trump w/50 (curiel or judge or mexican)” para los programas durante los días de la semana de CNN, Fox News, y MSNBC entre las 8 pm ET y las 11 pm ET desde el 27 de mayo al 9 de junio y repasó las transcripciones para los segmentos sobre los ataques de Donald Trump hacia el juez Curiel. Se incluyeron los segmentos con dos o más participantes discutiendo Curiel, con la excepción de los segmentos ya empaquetados o informes noticiosos de corresponsales en vivo. Todos los invitados fueron codificados de acuerdo con su identidad étnica.

    Julie Alderman y Sarah Wasko aportaron a este estudio.

  • Fox News’ Reaction To Trump’s Birtherism Was Predictably Terrible

    MSNBC And CNN Debunked Trump’s Lies, Explained How Trump Mainstreamed Birtherism, And Condemned His Manipulation Of The Press

    Blog ››› ››› CRISTINA LOPEZ

    Fox News championed Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump’s latest statement that he believes “President Obama was born in the U.S.” as “political media genius” while CNN and MSNBC noted that Trump’s latest statement follows years of mainstreaming racist birther conspiracy theories, debunked the candidate’s attempt to blame the birther lies on Hillary Clinton, and decried his manipulation of the press.

    After Donald Trump in a September 15 interview with The Washington Post “refused to say whether he believes Obama was born in Hawaii,” the Trump campaign released a falsehood-laden statement saying “Mr. Trump believes that President Obama was born in the United States,” and “was finally able to bring this ugly incident to its conclusion” in 2011.

    The next day Trump announced he’d deliver a “major statement” at his new Washington, D.C. hotel regarding whether he’d acknowledge Obama as an American. Reporters speculated that the Trump campaign’s strategy behind the much-anticipated September 16 event was to put to rest scrutiny about Trump’s years-long birther enthusiasm and to “remove the last vestiges of an issue Clinton campaign could attack on.”

    The major cable news networks provided wall-to-wall coverage of Trump’s event, in which his seconds-long statement that “President Obama was born in the United States” came at the very end of a lengthy campaign event featuring military members endorsing Trump, and it included the false claims that Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton started the birther conspiracy and that he ended it. Immediately after the statement, anchors on CNN and MSNBC called the candidate out for manipulating the press and for pushing falsehoods. On CNN, Ashleigh Banfield slammed the stunt and excoriated Trump’s “birther crap.” John King on At This Hour with Berman and Bolduan acknowledged the media “got played,” debunked Trump’s false accusation against Clinton, and condemned Trump for the “four or five years of leading a fraudulent, reckless campaign against the legitimacy of the United States president.” MSNBC used an on-screen graphic to single out Trump’s lie that Clinton started the birther movement, and during The Place for Politics, host Peter Alexander pointed out that Trump continued to give oxygen to birtherism even after President Obama released his birth certificate, saying “it’s not like he put this thing to rest” in 2011.

    In contrast, Fox News dove head first into the trap set by the Trump campaign. Happening Now host Jenna Lee declared Trump gave “the media what everyone was waiting for, his definitive comments about the quote, unquote ‘birther issue.’” Lee’s co-host Gregg Jarrett commended Trump for being “very precise, and direct and disciplined.” Fox guest Glenn Hall, a Wall Street Journal editor who set the stage before the event by praising Trump for “pivoting” away from birtherism, added that Trump “handled that pretty well.”

    Later, an Outnumbered on-screen graphic drew false equivalences claiming that Trump and Clinton were “blam[ing] each other” on the matter. Co-host Melissa Francis opined “nobody cares about these issues” and raved that Trump’s stunt was “political media genius,” while co-host Harris Faulkner dismissed the racist nature of birtherism by questioning “why is it racist” to question legitimacy “with Barack Obama and not with Ted Cruz?”:

    And on Shepard Smith Reporting, Chris Wallace, host of Fox News Sunday who was tapped to moderate the third presidential debate, said that unlike with some of his other outrageous incidents, “This one, in less than 24 hours, he cut it off.” Wallace’s determination that Trump’s statement shut the door on the birther issue flatly omitted any mention of Trump’s years of leading the charge in promoting such conspiracy theories.

    By declaring that Trump can put years of birtherism to rest by just saying he believes Obama is American, Fox News comes full circle. The network enthusiastically echoed Trump’s years-long, racist crusade to raise doubts about President Obama’s legitimacy, and provided Trump with a friendly platform to promote his birther beliefs. The press cannot allow the Trump campaign to play revisionist history with its candidate’s embrace of birtherism despite his intentions to put it behind him before the presidential debates.

  • Cable Networks Were "Played Like A Fiddle" By Donald Trump’s “20-Second” Birther Statement

    ››› ››› BOBBY LEWIS

    A slew of media critics and commentators shamed cable news networks for being “played” into providing free live coverage of a campaign event for Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump. After Trump teased a “major announcement,” cable news networks provided wall-to-wall coverage in anticipation that Trump would address criticism over his role in pushing conspiracy theories that President Obama was not born in the U.S. Trump’s mere seconds-long statement “came only after a lengthy campaign event featuring military officers and award winners who have endorsed him,” turning it into “a de facto commercial for the GOP candidate.”

  • Wall Street Journal Lauds Trump’s Economic Plan Experts Called “Nonsense” And “Fantasy”

    Editorial Board Favorably Compares Trump Economic Vision To Jeb Bush’s Plan

    ››› ››› ALEX MORASH

    The Wall Street Journal’s editorial board praised Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump’s latest update of his tax and economic policy proposals, which he announced during a September 15 speech at the Economic Club of New York. The Journal lauded Trump’s goal of sustained economic growth of 4 percent or more annually -- comparing it favorably to failed GOP candidate Jeb Bush’s 4 percent pledge. Once again, the editorial board ignored both the Journal’s own reporting that 4 percent growth would require economic “wizardry” and criticism from economists and experts who have frequently slammed Trump and Bush’s “nonsense” trickle-down economic plans.

  • Pundits Say Trump Can Put Years Of Birtherism To Rest By Just Saying He Believes Obama Is American

    ››› ››› CYDNEY HARGIS

    After five years of Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump pushing the conspiracy theory that President Obama was not born in America, his campaign released a statement on September 15 claiming that Trump actually does believe Obama was born in America. Media figures claimed that once the candidate actually makes that statement himself, he will put birtherism “to bed.” But media shouldn’t let Trump whitewash his multi-year effort to push this conspiracy theory.