In a textbook case of bias by omission, Univision’s coverage of last night’s LGBTQ forum skipped a key quote from candidate Beto O’Rourke.
Here’s how morning anchor Satcha Pretto covered the goings-on at last night’s event:
SATCHA PRETTO, ANCHOR, DESPIERTA AMÉRICA: “Power of Our Pride” is the motto that brought together, on the eve of National Coming Out Day, the Democratic presidential candidates that accepted the invitation to discuss their proposals for the LGBTQ community. They all showed support for the Equality Act, a bill that the House has already passed, which protects those who live in states where it isn't yet illegal to discriminate against individuals due to their sexual orientation. One of the moderators was CNN journalist Anderson Cooper, who is openly gay and joked around with Joe Biden. Let’s listen.
JOE BIDEN: When I came out and -- came out -- when I publicly stated…well...
ANDERSON COOPER: That would be news.
BIDEN: I got something to tell you.
COOPER: I kind of figured it out a while ago.
PRETTO: Candidate Beto O’Rourke was interrupted by a transgender African-American woman who spoke out against attacks on her community. 45 transgendered individuals have been murdered since last year. Candidate Pete Buttigieg who is openly gay, said that those assaults are an epidemic.
The first fatal defect in Univision’s report is its breezy description of the Equality Act as a shield against discrimination and not a sword to be wielded by the federal government against faith-based individuals and institutions. The second, of course, is its omission of Beto O’ Rourke’s most newsworthy statement:
The Democrats are coming for faith-based orgs- whether they are churches, private schools, universities or nonprofits. And Beto's saying it to your faces.
O’ Rourke was certainly mentioned in the report, but only within the context of being heckled. There is no mention whatsoever, though, of his threat to strip tax exemptions from faith-based institutions that uphold traditional marriage. Despierta América, Univision’s morning kaffeeklatsch, wasn’t the network’s only platform to try and soften last night’s totalitarian discourse.
Univision’s digital site put up a post titled: We knew that Democratic candidates reject discrimination against LGBTQ, but what are their plans to protect them? Again, there is no mention of Beto’s chilling threat.
To be clear, Univision’s omissions will not conceal O’ Rourke’s threats from the Hispanic community, a significant portion of whom attend churches and send kids to the types of schools that would be targeted by O’ Rourke’s proposed coercion. But they do serve to illustrate that the nation’s leading Spanish-language network is completely out of touch with the community it claims to serve and represent.