ABC, NBC Refuse to Announce DeSantis as Winner of Florida Governorship

The mandatory machine recount in Florida wrapped up Thursday to the joy of Congressman Ron DeSantis as he unofficially became governor-elect. DeSantis won by 0.4 percent over Democratic Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum. In spite of these facts, broadcast networks ABC and NBC, along with Spanish-language networks Telemundo and Univision, all refused to report DeSantis’s victory during their evening news programs.

Both ABC and NBC reported on the ongoing drama in the Florida recount, but they chose to focus only on the Senate race between current Republican Governor Rick Scott and incumbent Democrat Bill Nelson.

To news coming in tonight on the recount in Florida,” announced ABC’s sensationalist anchor David Muir during World News Tonight. “Election workers have just finished a machine recount of ballots. Republican candidate for Senate Rick Scott, who is Florida's governor, leads now by fewer than 13,000 votes over the Democratic incumbent, Senator Bill Nelson. That margin so slim, it has now automatically triggered a hand recount.

Muir’s news brief lasted a mere 19 seconds. Meanwhile, on NBC Nightly News, anchor Lester Holt wanted to get away from the Florida election as quickly as possible. He sprinted past the elections in a news brief that lasted a blistering 13 seconds and with a whopping total of two sentences:

There is late word this evening, the Florida Senate race is headed to a manual recount. The votes will be counted by hand and the procedure required by state law because of how close the margin is between Rick Scott and Bill Nelson.

 

 

As for the Spanish-language networks, Telemundo didn’t mention the Florida recount at all. On Univision, correspondent Lourdes Del Río had also focused on the contentious Senate recount. “Rick Scott, who is ahead by sparsely by 12 thousand votes, called this afternoon to the Senate put an end to this counting process which, according to him, in the end, deliver the same result, but Bill Nelson has no plans to give up, at least for now,” she reported.

The only broadcast network that mentioned DeSantis’s win in any way was the CBS Evening News. “Republican Ron DeSantis leads Democrat Andrew Gillum. Neither election will be certified until next week,” announced anchor Jeff Glor.

He also noted a Florida judge who unloaded on his state for their incompetence in handling the election process. “A federal judge in Tallahassee today slammed Florida's election process, saying, ‘We have been the laughingstock of the world,’” Glor reported.

While those national broadcast networks refused to declare DeSantis the winner, local media outlets were throwing in the towel for Gillum. “BREAKING: Ron DeSantis is Florida’s next governor. Margin barely budges after machine recount,” declared the Miami Herald in a tweet. News 4 out of Jacksonville also put out a tweet stating: “#BREAKING: Florida now has a governor-elect with Ron DeSantis the apparent winner after a machine recount”.

If the roles were reversed, it’s safe to say the networks would not have a problem proclaiming Gillum the winner, especially considering how they were basically rooting for him the whole time.

The transcripts are below, click "expand" to read:

ABC’s World News Tonight
November 15, 2018
6:44 p.m. Eastern

DAVID MUIR: To news coming in tonight on the recount in Florida. Election workers have just finished a machine recount of ballots. Republican candidate for Senate Rick Scott, who is Florida's governor, leads now by fewer than 13,000 votes over the Democratic incumbent, Senator Bill Nelson. That margin so slim, it has now automatically triggered a hand recount.

CBS Evening News
November 15, 2018
6:36 p.m. Eastern

JEFF GLOR: A federal judge in Tallahassee today slammed Florida's election process, saying, "We have been the laughingstock of the world." He denied a request to extend the deadline for submitting recount results. In the Senate race, Republican Rick Scott leads Democrat Bill Nelson, but the margin is so close a hand recount was ordered. It appears the machine recount will settle the governor's race. Republican Ron DeSantis leads Democrat Andrew Gillum. Neither election will be certified until next week.

NBC Nightly News
November 15, 2018
7:09 p.m. Eastern

LESTER HOLT: There is late word this evening, the Florida Senate race is headed to a manual recount. The votes will be counted by hand and the procedure required by state law because of how close the margin is between Rick Scott and Bill Nelson.


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NBDaily Campaigns & Elections 2018 Governors 2018 Congressional Bias by Omission Double Standards Political Groups Conservatives & Republicans Liberals & Democrats Broadcast Television ABC World News Tonight CBS CBS Evening News NBC NBC Nightly News Foreign/Non-English Media Telemundo Univision Major Newspapers Miami Herald Florida Video David Muir Lester Holt Jeff Glor