Univision presidential forums stocked with partisans
September 20th, 2012
01:27 PM ET
10 months ago

Univision presidential forums stocked with partisans

(CNN) – Television audiences for the two presidential candidate forums hosted this week by Univision, a Spanish language network, could be excused for coming away with the impression that Latinos are wild about their positions on Latino issues.

But what the viewers might not realize is the Wednesday night program with Mitt Romney and another Thursday night with President Barack Obama at the University of Miami forum are stocked with ringers.

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As first reported in The Hurricane, the University of Miami student newspaper, the university said they received 380 of the total 750 tickets to join the audience watching Romney take questions Wednesday night - but only with the stipulation from the Romney camp that they go to members of the campus Republican groups.

The Obama campaign asked that a smaller portion of the tickets they gave the University of Miami go to student groups supporting Democrats and the rest be distributed by lottery. The process of ticket distribution is not unusual for campaign rallies hosted at institutions but is notable for an event represented as a nonpartisan question and answer format.

Perhaps ironically, Univision decided to hold the forums because the Commission of Presidential debates chose no moderators of Latino ethnicity and the television network felt that their issues would be misrepresented.

Univision and the university both confirmed that the 300 tickets that didn't go to partisan students would be distributed by the campaigns themselves to their local supporters. That means the only audience members who were not supporters of the campaigns were the 75 chosen by Univision.

Univision broadcast the Romney event on its television stations around the country, which reach audiences well into the millions. Those audiences had no way of knowing that the folks sitting in the chairs at University of Miami were chosen mostly by the Romney campaign unless they watched other Univision reports or saw the broadcast made available by the co-host, Facebook, where a Univision commentator warned viewers of the partisan audience.

In a statement, the University of Miami said: "Because of rules imposed by the campaigns, the University had to give preference to politically affiliated student organizations and student leaders. The University got roughly half of the tickets for each event."

The university had originally planned on distributing the tickets through a lottery, but according to the Miami Hurricane and campus officials, the Romney campaign objected, followed by a similar request by the Obama campaign. The partisan audience cheered wildly to every answer Romney gave at last night's event, interrupting Jorge Ramos and Maria Elena Salinas, the Univision anchors who already had trouble getting in pointed follow up questions because of the simultaneous translation.

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– Letterman: No hard feelings toward Romney


Filed under: 2012 • Florida • Latinos • Mitt Romney
soundoff (50 Responses)
  1. myviewis

    HOLY TIGHTY WHITIES WILLARD

    How does Willard poll with Puerto Ricans, Dominicans and Mexicans?
    ------------------------

    Not well because they are government dependent, these people like big government.

    September 20, 2012 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  2. DC Observer

    I would prefer NO audiences - they can really skew a performance here you have 30 million people watching the debates and a couple of hundred rowdy on site can sway the 30 million as to who is winning. We saw that in the GOP Primary in SC where Newt scored big becasue of a heavy Newt supporter % in the audience.

    have you ever seen an Obama press conference - he has the names of the reportes he calls on becasue the questions are mostly scripted AND these folks are Democrative leaning folks About 85% of the questions Obama gets in a press confernece are stacked to come from "friends"

    The media is no longer in the news business; it is in the public opinion molding business

    September 20, 2012 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  3. teacheng

    They were cheering the strangest things that Romney said, too. Sad, that he isn't even brave enough to face a skeptical audience. He does much better with a boardroom of billionaires. I remember when Obama went on O'Reilly Factor in 2008. Will Romney do the same on MSNBC? I seriously doubt it.

    September 20, 2012 02:34 pm at 2:34 pm |
  4. Marie MD

    @myviewis, you really think after all your posts that we can velieve that you have Latino friends? I am from Florida. I have a better feel of that state than you do. I actually have friends live there and you are WRONG!!!

    September 20, 2012 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  5. mannycl

    Latinos should remember that only two presidentes that did somehting for them were Ronald Reagan in 1986 and George Bush in 2006. The first passed a sweeping migratory reform but the Bush's proposal did not go to a vote in the senate controled by the Democrats. It wouldn't hurt to remember that Democrats just pay lip service to Latinos at election time and after that is all history until the next one.

    September 20, 2012 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  6. sayer

    Behind closed doors, Mitt says all Lations are apart of the lazy, mooching 47%.

    September 20, 2012 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  7. WiseUp

    I'm so glad all of you who made comments are better off than you were four years ago. You crack me up when you state Romney lies, please tell me one truth Oidiot has told????? Do any of you see what is happening around the world? Do you even understand what a financial mess we are in? And do me a favor, stop blaming Bush. Oidiot has had four years to at least start to show some progress and we have nothing. I ask you all to go back to your so called "truthful" president when Matt Lauer interviewed him and he said "if i can't get this done in four years than i should be a one term president". Why aren't all of you listening to that?????

    September 20, 2012 02:41 pm at 2:41 pm |
  8. Robertrr

    The bottom line is that Romney is done. He is a liar and everyon knows that.
    Those that hate Obama for not getting everything done. You have to remember
    that Congress has to approve just about everything. Remember when Congress
    couldn't get it together on the budget and they kept blaming each other (Dem & Rep).
    So Obama has tried but he can't do it all by himself.

    September 20, 2012 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  9. Ribidit

    ...the acrid smell of Romney's campaign afire smells almost as good as my cheese fondue....Kirchwasser anyone?

    September 20, 2012 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  10. mannycl

    After 4 years of unemployment that hit minorities more that anybody else, what can the current President offe. His policies did not work. Why should we vote for him? Any logical explanation out there? I doubt it except fior those who vote based on miracles instead of reason.

    September 20, 2012 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  11. lil

    Watch romney very close when he's speaking, watch his eyes and you can see when he lying. He has no heart and soul for the people of America. He meant what he said at that event in the tape. He just didnt think anyone else would hear it.

    September 20, 2012 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  12. myviewis

    Marie MD

    @myviewis, you really think after all your posts that we can velieve that you have Latino friends? I am from Florida. I have a better feel of that state than you do. I actually have friends live there and you are WRONG!!!
    ----------------------------

    Yes I do have Latino friends, I do business with Latinos, I have Latinos in my office building, Chamber of Commerce meetings and I even have Latinos in my family. Sorry, but you're friends disagree with those Latinos I am in touch with everyday.

    September 20, 2012 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  13. Paul Williamson

    Robme is oblivious to the lies, deceptions and changes in positions he has taken over the last several years, Either he is getting senile and cannot remember, is deliberately lying, or is used to warping the truth because he did it at Bain for so long-thats how corporate executives operate, they lie to their shareholders, their employers, and their banks and call it "shrewd" business. If he is elected President, God forbid, he will be in trouble all the time , he has no credibility.

    September 20, 2012 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  14. penny wright

    Could the contrast be any greater between Romney, who looted American companies and shipped their jobs overseas, only pays taxes at a 13% rate, stashes his money in the Cayman Islands to avoid U.S. taxes, and President Obama who saved GM and created 30 straight months of private sector job growth?

    September 20, 2012 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  15. Maria

    "Fake" is the best word that describes Romney

    September 20, 2012 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  16. Anonymous

    both confirmed that the 300 tickets that didn't go to partisan students so both side are doing it not just Romney .

    September 20, 2012 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  17. Jake in Omaha

    Maybe someone should ask Willard why he thinks us old folks on Social Security are actually on WELFARE.
    Listen up Willard. I have been paying into the Social Security for near on to 50 years. I am not on WELFARE
    I am collecting my pension that the government promised.

    You should fess up about your taxes. If you didn't have something to hide you would release the last 10 years of returns. I will make you a deal post yours and I'll post mine.

    September 20, 2012 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  18. reese

    cant wait til this election is over. So fed up with all this political garbage.

    September 20, 2012 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  19. myviewis

    The Real Tom Paine

    -myviewis

    The Latinos I speak with are not happy with Obama and the high unemployment in the Latino communities and they are ready to give someone else a chance, if Obama couldn't do it in 4 years he won't do it in the next 4 years.
    ***********************
    You either live in Miami, or don't know many Latinos. Quit trying to display non-existant insights.
    -------------------------------

    And you know, speak with Latinos????? I give you that it is true that most Latinos favor Obama and will vote for Obama and do not like Romney.

    But as I wrote those few Latinos that I do business with, speak to, are in my family or I have met in the Chamber of Commerce or other business luncheons are not happy with Obama and are ready to give someone else a chance and they do tell me that unemployment is extremely high in the Latino communities.

    September 20, 2012 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  20. Rudy NYC

    myviewis ; wrote

    The Latinos I speak with are not happy with Obama and the high unemployment in the Latino communities and they are ready to give someone else a chance, if Obama couldn't do it in 4 years he won't do it in the next 4 years.
    -----------------–
    Didn't they tell that they are more fearful and absolutely terrified of Mitt Romney, too?

    September 20, 2012 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  21. skytech

    Univision and the university both confirmed that the 300 tickets that didn't go to partisan students would be distributed by the campaigns themselves to their local supporters. Both side are doing it no just Romney.

    September 20, 2012 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  22. noteasilyswayed

    As a member of the middle class (real middle class, not the $200-$250 k that Romney says is middle class) I know that the Romney-Ryan ticket will do nothing to help us; every policy and bill they will try to pass will benefit the millionaires and billionaires, not the rest of us. After the leak of Romney's comments, I have decided to vote for a straight Democratic ticket this November; mind you that I am an independent and have never voted a straight ticket before. The GOP has totally abandoned the middle class.

    September 20, 2012 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  23. Just My Point of View

    Don't you all get it yet? Everything is scripted and setup to make them look their best – and in case you don't know it, that's from BOTH SIDES. It's all a bunch of lip service and c.r.a.p. and they'll do whatever they want, no matter what the promise is, simply because no one will challenge them or probably knows the difference. We're more concerned with Kate's boooobs, Madonna and birth contol, c.r.a.p. that means NOTHING, than what's important. I don't give a damn who wins these elections because it doesn't make any difference. NOT ONE BIT. Get it yet?

    September 20, 2012 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  24. larry

    Somehow Univision managed to get all the Latin Oreos in one place. They still couldn't drown out the chant of "Pendejo" the television audience heard.

    September 20, 2012 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  25. NOTAGOPFAN

    @myviewis – In your last post you forgot to mention Fox news. Yeah their poll had Obama leading also.

    September 20, 2012 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
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