Mega Anchor Reads Riot Act Over ‘Sex with Hillary’ Remark

One would think that a story in which a Hispanic South Florida congressional candidate running in a hotly-contested battleground bellwether race is caught on tape saying crude, sexual things about his own party's presidential candidate - the first female major-party nominee in our nation's history - would garner top billing on our major domestic Spanish-language newscasts...which are, after all, based in Miami. And yet here we are again, talking about biases of omission at Univision and Telemundo. Not Mega TV, though.
 
And yet, both Univision and Telemundo's principal national evening newscasts have so far been silent with regard to former Congressman Joe García's incredibly crude comments, which were caught on tape by a tracker during the grand opening of a campaign office in Key West. Instead, the networks focused on joining the establishment media in laying early groundwork for "Healtherism" narratives regarding questions over Hillary Clinton's health.
 
Univison and Telemundo rival Mega Noticiero, however, did open their national newscast with the García story. Anchor Maria Elvira Salazar went live with García, who was slated to appear in-studio, but phoned it in citing South Florida traffic as the reason he couldn't make it in on time. Salazar let nothing slide - from García's tardiness, to his pander, to his justifications for making the crude remarks in the first place. The interview was a classic case study in just asking tough questions and allowing viewers to arrive at their own conclusions. Here is video of a key exchange:

MARIA ELVIRA SALAZAR, ANCHOR, MEGA NOTICIERO: And so where does this part come in about the sex and the part about her not wanting to have sex with anybody and (about) her not allowing herself to be influenced or seduced by anybody? Explain that part again to me.
 
FORMER CONGRESSMAN JOE GARCIA (D-FL): It seems to me that what I am saying is that I was not talking about is about someone who seeks an interest beyond that of doing her job. That she neither has to be the most beautiful or the ugliest or the most anything. She's the most qualified, period. And that is what we would demand from a man. However, we want something else when a woman comes along. And I imagine, Maria Elvira, that you have lived through that shifting standard as a professional in this country. And the truth is, that what we want is the most qualified person. And the thing is, that in this environment- in this election, there is one candidate that is supremely qualified, and another that is not. 

García, in turn, may have made additional news by justifying his statements as a defense against misogyny, and of the "supreme" qualifications of Hillary Clinton. 

Here is the full aforementioned translated transcript of the interview which stands as an indictment of the biases at Univision and Telemundo, and was originally conducted in Spanish:

MARIA ELVIRA SALAZAR, ANCHOR, MEGA NOTICIERO: Well, we continue with Hillary. In South Florida Joe Garcia, who is the Democratic congressional candidate for the 26th District of Florida is once again under public scrutiny- this time, because remarks (made) by Joe were recorded (as he was) talking about Hillary...and sex. Garcia was recorded by an alleged political investigator while in the midst of an informal conversation during the opening of a campaign office in Key West. The candidate referred to Hillary as a competent person that never expects anyone to want to have sex with her, nor that she would expect to seduce someone in exchange for something. (Introducing tracker video) Let's listen to part of the conversation: 

FORMER CONGRESSMAN JOE GARCIA (D-FL):  believe that we're going to have- I mean, I'll mention it when I speak- I believe we're about to see the most consequential presidency that we've seen since Lyndon Johnson. This is not because I think Hillary Clinton is the greatest ever. But I do believe she is extremely, exceedingly competent, and she- I know this is going to sound weird to you, but to me, as somebody who studies history, she's going to be very similar to Lyndon Johnson. Lyndon Johnson wasn't a particularly charming man, he wasn't a particularly nice man. He would ask you nice, and then when you didn't do it, he made you do it. And Hillary is under no illusions that you want to have sex with her, or that you- she's going to seduce you, or out-think you.

(Inaudible)

I don't want to be offensive to women...

MARIA ELVIRA SALAZAR, ANCHOR, MEGA NOTICIERO: Well, Mr. Joe Garcia joins us now via phone. How are you, Sir?

FORMER CONGRESSMAN JOE GARCIA (D-FL): Maria Elvira, I'm en route to your studio, but unfortunately traffic has held me up, and thank you for the opportunity to join you.

MARIA ELVIRA SALAZAR, ANCHOR, MEGA NOTICIERO: Well, um, yes, we appreciate that, we're live and unfortunately, time does not wait and we thank you for joining us by phone. This remark is on the front page of the local paper, it is also on Politico. And without a doubt, saying "sex", "Hillary", and "Lyndon B. Johnson" has garnered you headlines. What were you really trying to say, Joe?

FORMER CONGRESSMAN JOE GARCIA (D-FL): Well, Maria Elvira, I would imagine that as a woman that has fought stereotypes her entire career, you understand what I am talking about. Which is precisely that this is a person that accomplishes the goals that she sets out for herself. We're not asking anyone to fall in love with her here, we're not asking- she is not asking for any interests. What she wants is to fulfill her mission. And what we are going to see is a president that will be highly efficient. A person that is committed to doing that, the most qualified person to run for president- at least during my lifetime- in the United States. And what I was doing- with someone who did not support her- was trying to put all of that within the context of what we are voting for. And this- the horror that you hear from the Republicans who have a misogynist candidate running for president- it even seems absurd to me.

MARIA ELVIRA SALAZAR, ANCHOR, MEGA NOTICIERO: But- but what did they misinterpret, in your consideration, according to your words? What did you not say that the Republicans are claiming you did say? 

FORMER CONGRESSMAN JOE GARCIA (D-FL): It seems to me that what I was trying to express...and Maria Elvira, I want to be clear. If anyone felt offended, I deeply apologize because that was not my interest. My intent as a father, as the son of a great mother is precisely the equality of women before the law, and the capability and what we are looking at as a candidate for the presidency. There is a candidate for the presidency that is supremely qualified...and that is efficient, and wants to do the job, more so than her opponent. 

MARIA ELVIRA SALAZAR, ANCHOR, MEGA NOTICIERO: And so where does this part come in about the sex and the part about her not wanting to have sex with anybody and (about) her not allowing herself to be influenced or seduced by anybody? Explain that part again to me. 

FORMER CONGRESSMAN JOE GARCIA (D-FL): It seems to me that what I am saying is that I was not talking about is about someone who seeks an interest beyond that of doing her job. That she neither has to be the most beautiful nor the ugliest or the most anything. She's the most qualified, period. And that is what we would demand from a man. However, we want something else when a woman comes along. And I imagine, Maria Elvira, that you have lived through that shifting standard as a professional in this country. And the truth is, that what we want is the most qualified person. And the thing is, that in this environment- in this election, there is a person that is supremely qualified, and another that is not. 

MARIA ELVIRA SALAZAR, ANCHOR, MEGA NOTICIERO: Of course but when you make references to me, Joe, what you are telling me is whether I've been under threat or under some type of harrassment. Well, of course, without a doubt- we've all endured that- anyone that has sat in this type of chair has dealt with that hardship. But in your case, what you are basically saying is that the Republicans are- let's say what the Republicans are saying: That you offended her. That you offended the candidate of your party. And so, has anyone called you from the national campaign - reached out to you? Has this transcended to the heights of the party?

FORMER CONGRESSMAN JOE GARCIA (D-FL): Maria Elvira, no. I've spoken to friends within the party and with friends of the Secretary with regard to this, and it seems to me that they understand this as I understand this. But obviously, I apologize if anyone feels offended. But the point that were trying to get at is that this is a person that is supremely qualified for the job. That will do her job efficiently. If it were two men arriving at the candidacy for the presidency, we wouldn't be talking about all these things that we are talking about, which go beyond what we are presenting. Who is the person most qualified to be President of the United States? and in this case, it is Hillary Rodham Clinton. Despite what they say, and despite all the outside noise... 

MARIA ELVIRA SALAZAR, ANCHOR, MEGA NOTICIERO: And so next time without a doubt, Joe, next time without a doubt, that a candidate like yourself at a time like this where the situation is difficult and heated, you don't want to distract voter attention to comments such as these. I imagine that you'll be very careful when you are speaking- even if you are in the shower. Isn't that right? Because that's- that's a conversation that was recorded in a hallway, where you didn't know that a recording was being made. Isn't that true?

FORMER CONGRESSMAN JOE GARCIA (D-FL): The, the...and this is the type of campaign that the Republicans have to do. A campaign that (unintelligible)

MARIA ELVIRA SALAZAR, ANCHOR, MEGA NOTICIERO: Oh, because it was a Republican? You think it was a Republican that brought to light...

FORMER CONGRESSMAN JOE GARCIA (D-FL): It was an operative. It was an operative that they send to all the events that I am at. There is no event that I go to, no hallway, no place where they won't send investigators to follow me. And one gets older, and in the end, you don't pay attention to that. But the reality is that my words were (intended) to praise Secretary Clinton...

MARIA ELVIRA SALAZAR, ANCHOR, MEGA NOTICIERO: But you're telling me that- let me see if I understand. You were in a hallway where there were operatives that were not persons known to you. Or in other words, they introduced a spy. Is that what you are telling me?

FORMER CONGRESSMAN JOE GARCIA (D-FL): Well, that's exactly it. We were in a hallway, speaking with Democrats, at a party where there were more than sixty, sixty persons- we were opening a campaign office...

MARIA ELVIRA SALAZAR, ANCHOR, MEGA NOTICIERO: They were Democrats! What do you mean, Republicans? And so was there a Republican (that) snuck in, passing himself off as a Democrat?

FORMER CONGRESSMAN JOE GARCIA (D-FL): We Democrats don't give a test to see who is a Democrat and who is a Republican as they come into a party. It was a campaign (office) opening party, and all were welcome, and this gentleman snuck in there, see, he doesn't put the camera on my face but does it as though he weren't recording. But Maria Elvira, in the end, I said what I said. And whoever was offended, I apologize. But clearly- what you hear from me is a defense of one of the most qualified persons in the history of this country- and that I feel honored not just from supporting her now, but from doing so when her campaign for the presidency began- because it will be a better future for me, for my family, and in particular for my daughter who began college just three weeks ago.

MARIA ELVIRA SALAZAR, ANCHOR, MEGA NOTICIERO: Congratulations. We'll see if what you are saying is what the rest of the voters- the population thinks, because we know that this is a very hotly contested situation both for you Democrats as well as for the Republicans. It's always a pleasure. I'm glad that you chose this program in order to clarify this which has gone around- it's going around social media, at least. Because of course, when you say, "Clinton", "sex"...

FORMER CONGRESSMAN JOE GARCIA (D-FL):  (LAUGHS)

MARIA ELVIRA SALAZAR, ANCHOR, MEGA NOTICIERO: ...that always attracts some morbosity. Thank you very much, Congressman. Always a pleasure.

 Tell the Truth 2016 


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