The Washington Post reported yesterday that Spanish-language channel Univision is partnering with ABC News to create a 24-hour news channel called Fusion. This new channel, set to debut late this summer, will aim to attract young, mostly second-generation Hispanics who are more comfortable communicating in English than in Spanish. As the Post notes, Fusion could exert much influence over the opinions of Hispanics. And because Hispanics are growing in number and political influence, Fusion could help shape the outcome of the 2016 election and many more elections to come. The question, therefore, is whether the new channel will be fair and balanced or ideologically driven.
On that front, things don’t look promising. The Post reported on what ABC News president Ben Sherwood said about Fusion: “Sherwood, the ABC news president, says ‘Fusion will be guided by the standards of ABC News.’ But he leaves open the possibility of ‘clearly delineated opinion or advocacy.’” Guided by the standards of ABC News? If that’s the case, Fusion is likely to become yet another appendage of the Left.
But let’s focus on Fusion’s other parent channel. If we end up seeing “clearly delineated opinion or advocacy” on Fusion, it will likely reflect Univision’s views, and Univision leans strongly to the left.
The Post article called attention to a few examples of Univision’s bias. Popular anchor Jorge Ramos, who will host an evening news program on Fusion, has openly advocated for the legalization of illegal immigrants. The network has conducted voter registration drives. Then there was the dust-up with Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) during the 2012 presidential campaign. The Post reported:
"Rubio was angered by a Univision report about the quarter-century-old drug arrest of his brother-in-law. His staff accused [Univision news president Isaac] Lee of offering a deal to kill or soften the story in return for Rubio appearing for an interview, a charge Lee denied."
Perhaps Fusion will break free from Univision’s template and become an impartial news outlet. But that seems unlikely. According to the Post story, Ramos wants Fusion to represent a “pro-Hispanic” viewpoint. A network that plays into identity politics will have a hard time staying neutral. We may be doomed to yet another liberal media outlet that skews rather than reports the news. That's something that no American, Hispanic of heritage or not, really needs.