On an Election Day that could be marked by a historic turnout of Latino voters, cable news morning shows had almost no Latino guests, and more than 80 percent of the guests brought on to discuss the 2016 elections were white.
Media Matters analyzed the guests who appeared on the Election Day editions of CNN’s New Day, Fox News’ Fox & Friends and MSNBC’s Morning Joe and found only one Hispanic guest in the three hours of coverage: Rachel Campos-Duffy appeared on Fox News alongside her husband, Rep. Sean Duffy (R-WI), to discuss their support for Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump; the remaining 92 percent of the guests on Fox News were white. CNN and MSNBC did not feature a single Hispanic guest discussing the election; 84 percent of guests on CNN were white, and on MSNBC 92 percent of guests were white.
Latino journalists have taken notice of the dearth of Latino voices in election discussions that often touch upon the importance of the Hispanic vote. Univision anchor Enrique Acevedo noted the absence of Hispanics on CNN and MSNBC in a tweet, and Futuro Media Group’s Julio Ricardo Varela remarked that there were “no Puerto Ricans at the table” even as MSNBC’s Morning Joe discussed the influence of Puerto Rican voters in Florida.
In this election cycle, the Latino electorate is “on track for historic turnout,” according to the polling firm Latino Decisions. The firm projects a “three percent to five percent” increase in Latino voter turnout compared to 2012. In states with Latino-heavy populations like Florida and Nevada, the record-setting surge of Hispanic voters -- likely motivated by Trump’s xenophobic rhetoric -- could help define the election. And yet, like in past situations where Latinos are at the center of the issues being discussed, Hispanic voices continue to be marginalized in the news media.
Media Matters analyzed all guest appearances on November 8 from 6 a.m. to 9 a.m. on CNN’s New Day, Fox News’ Fox & Friends, and MSNBC’s Morning Joe and coded them for ethnicity.