Years have passed but at long last, Univision appears eager to cover an email scandal that reverberates at the highest levels of government. And all it took was for there to be a Trump attached to it.
On Univision's weekly public affairs show, Al Punto, Republican analyst Adolfo Franco does a fine job of redirecting any attempt to spin the Clinton e-mail scandal as being only about the use of personal e-mails in the conduct of official government business.
This, despite the best efforts of Jorge Silva of Latino Victory Fund who, it should be noted, served as director of Hispanic Media for the Clinton campaign before joining Latino Victory. So Franco not only had to debate a Clinton alumnus on the emails but also push back against guest host Enrique Acevedo’s flawed framing of the issue while reminding Univision’s viewers of the details of the Clinton email scandal, many of whom probably heard them laid out in this manner for the first time on this network.
Of course you’ll recall that Univision could hardly be bothered to cover various stages of the Clinton email scandal. The network did so only reluctantly, including near the end of the election cycle, when news broke that the FBI was reopening its investigation due to findings subsequent to search warrants executed pursuant to the Anthony Weiner sexting case.
Back then, the network's consistent burial of the Clinton scandal was both an editorial and a business decision, as our analyses of Univision's coverage documented throughout the campaign. Most notably, senior anchor Jorge Ramos admitted as much to his colleage Carmen Aristegui on the morning after Election Day 2016:
CARMEN ARISTEGUI: Hillary Clinton, Jorge Ramos...what do you say about her? She wasn't up to (the task), how would you define a campaign such as Hillary's that ultimately could not manage to defeat a character like Trump?
JORGE RAMOS, UNIVISION ANCHOR: Well, um, they were even more wrong than we were.
CARMEN ARISTEGUI: Even (more).
JORGE RAMOS, UNIVISION ANCHOR: Their polling. Well, because they thought that they were going to win. Because they believed that their candidate, in spite of all her mistakes, was going to be able to win. Um, we now have to give a little more weight to what the Director of the FBI did, that obviously had an impact. More weight has to be given to the erasure of 30,000 emails. People no longer believed her, people had serious doubts about her, and the wrong calculation was to believe that her lack of credibility was going to be less important than the racism and sexism of Donald Trump.
Now that it’s a Trump under fire for allegedly using a private e-mail for government business, Univision is all in on some e-mails. But we remember when they most certainly weren't.
Watch the full exchange below, as aired on Univision’s Al Punto on Sunday, November 25th, 2018:
ENRIQUE ACEVEDO, HOST, AL PUNTO: Another important investigation concerning the campaign. And it is that of Hillary Clinton’s emails, a central issue for Republicans in the presidential campaign, and still is, in many conservative spaces. This week it became known that Ivanka Trump, the president’s daughter, used a personal email for official matters. Adolfo, isn’t that a contradiction? Is there not a response from the Republican Party similar to what we saw for months in the case of the former Secretary of State?
ADOLFO FRANCO, REPUBLICAN ANALYST: Well, let’s see first whether these are classified communications in the first place, which was a main point regarding Hillary Clinton- that she was using an email, sending emails or messages with matters that we know were classified, or secret in a manner of speaking. I...but we don’t know the facts in this case. What the president has clearly said is that Ivanka will speak and address the situation. It isn’t about using...or not using a private email. It is about whether the things that were communicated were sensitive matters that need to be protected.
JORGE SILVA, VP OF COMMUNICATIONS, LATINO VICTORY FUND: Let’s recall that (at issue) during the campaign it was the fact of using a personal email.
FRANCO: And deleting them.
SILVA: And Hillary Clinton was criticized.
FRANCO: And deleting them.
SILVA: Using these emails…
FRANCO. No. Deleting them.
SILVA: The email...using personal email…
FRANCO: No. No.
SILVA: What we now see is the hypocrisy…
SILVA: Of President Trump, the hypocrisy of the Republicans...
FRANCO: No, not at all…
SILVA...that they aren’t talking about Ivanka’s emails. We know that she had communications regarding the schedule, regarding events where the President would be present. That’s sensitive!