Univision’s report on the FBI raid of the City of San Juan's administrative building shows a strong instance of bias by framing - in which an otherwise neutral report is contaminated by biased framing.
Below is the full report on the FBI raid as broadcast on the October 16, 2018 edition of Noticiero Univision. Watch for the non-sequitur at the end:
ARANTXA LOIZAGA, NEWS ANCHOR, UNIVISION: Dozens of FBI agents raided the municipal (government) building in San Juan, Puerto Rico as part of its investigation into Mayor Carmen Yulín Cruz and other capital city officials. The federal agency would be there to gather information on contracts granted to a company called BR Solutions for $4.7 million dollars and whose owner donated money to several political campaigns, including that of Yulín Cruz. The raid comes a month after President Trump said that the Puerto Rican government is corrupt.
The facts of the case themselves are not that difficult to comprehend. The FBI investigation stems from a whistleblower lawsuit filed by a former employee, alleging retaliation after pointing out a scheme to favor a preferred vendor with what ultimately amounted to no-bid business. Per San Juan’s El Vocero:
The lawsuit states that during the San Sebastian Street Festival of 2015, Molina began to notice a frequent practice which consisted of her supervisors requesting purchase orders in the afternoons, or requested quotes to be submitted by vendors the following day.
It is alleged that given the “pressure” due to the artificial timeframe of the orders, the City of San Juan paid some “preferred vendors” triple what was paid to “regular vendors”, because the first group could make deliveries in a short timeframe.
Likewise it is alleged that, on occasion, the purchases weren’t even complete until the vendor delivered the materials. The document mentions that among the preferred vendors was Lionel Pereira of BR Solutions, a business that allegedly was incorporated on February 23rd, 2013, shortly after (Carmen Yulín) Cruz Soto became Mayor.
It is stated that on occasions, that contractor delivered the equipment before it was even requested, or in fact before the purchase orders were issued.
At the same time, the whistleblower alleges that Pereira told her that his business received the list of required materials and specifications several days or even a week in advance of the city issuing the official list to its purchasing office so they could then request the quotes.
Allegedly, due to the fact that BR Solutions Corp. knew that they were going to be selected, they’d obtain the materials weeks in advance of the city of San Juan issuing the purchase order.
This, in a nutshell, is what led to the U.S. Attorney for Puerto Rico to empanel a grand jury. But to hear it from the radical separatist Mayor of San Juan, this is all somehow connected to her grandstanding after Hurricane María’s devastating impact on Puerto Rico.
Follow this CBS link, and go to the 6:55 mark so you can hear for yourselves the birth of a conspiracy theory out of the mayor’s own mouth - namely, that President Trump sicced the FBI on her due to her post-Maria protests. Never mind that Vocero’s own reporting establishes that the facts of the case go back to 2013, well before Trump ran for the presidency.
In fairness, it isn’t just Univision that has uncritically reported Mayor Cruz’ conspiracy theory as something factual (and it isn’t the first time that they do so). Much of the national media have chosen to run with Cruz’ conspiracy theory, thus abetting her attempts to turn a legitimate FBI probe into a Trump story.
This sort of nonsense is what we warned about when pointing out that the liberal media vetted their darling in Puerto Rico incredibly poorly.