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September 30th, 2012
El Presidente Chávez endorses President Obama
By Dan Miller
Univision Fast and Furious “Bombshell”
President Obama may not get as much Latin American support as previously anticipated. With Univision — the “leading media company serving Hispanic America” — set to broadcast a “bombshell” report tonight on Fast and Furious apparently focusing on the many deaths it caused in Latin America, his support seems likely to diminish.
As observed at PJ Tatler, Univision has not coddled President Obama recently.
Univision’s anchors grilled President Obama about Fast and Furious during a town hall meeting on the network earlier in September, suggesting that Attorney General Eric Holder ought to be fired over the deadly scandal. Univision’s prominence among Spanish-speakers could have a big impact. Fast and Furious victims have mostly been Mexican citizens caught up in the drug war.
According to the Daily Caller,
“The consequences of the controversial ‘Fast and Furious’ undercover operation put in place by the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) in 2009 have been deadlier than what has been made public to date,” the network said. “The exclusive, in-depth investigation by Univision News’ award-winning Investigative Unit — Univision Investiga — has found that the guns that crossed the border as part of Operation Fast and Furious caused dozens of deaths inside Mexico.”
Among other groups of Fast and Furious victim stories Univision says it will tell in the special to air Sunday evening at 7 p.m., is one about how “16 young people attending a party in a residential area of Ciudad Juárez in January of 2010″ were gunned down with weapons the Obama administration gave to drug cartel criminals through Fast and Furious.
“Univision News’ Investigative Unit was also able to identify additional guns that escaped the control of ATF agents and were used in different types of crimes throughout Mexico,” the network added. “Furthermore, some of these guns — none of which were reported by congressional investigators — were put in the hands of drug traffickers in Honduras, Puerto Rico, and Colombia. A person familiar with the recent congressional hearings called Univision’s findings ‘the holy grail’ that Congress had been searching for.” …
Univision has aggressively covered Fast and Furious, and its most recent major run-in with the scandal came when network anchor Jorge Ramos grilled Obama in an interview on the scandal, asking him why he hasn’t “fired” Holder. During the interview, Obama made at least one false statement relating to Fast and Furious.
The viewership of Univision’s interviews with President Obama and Governor Romney was slightly skewed in favor of Governor Romney:
Univision aired Meet the Candidate interviews with Romney and Obama — on Wednesday and Thursday, respectively — and slightly more viewers opted for Romney. The challenger’s one-hour special pulled in 2.8 million viewers at 10 p.m., topping Obama’s telecast by 100,000.
While the skewing in favor of Governor Romney was modest, I found it surprising that President Obama was not substantially more widely viewed than Governor Romney. Might it suggest that Hispanic voters’ interest in Governor Romney may be increasing while that in President Obama is diminishing?
As noted above, it was during that Univision interview that President Obama was — for the first time during a major broadcast widely viewed by those commonly seen as his avid supporters — seriously questioned about Fast and Furious. Generally, he responded ineffectively with talking points. During the Univision report coming up tonight, likely to be widely viewed, some of those talking points will probably be challenged effectively.
Chávez’ Obama endorsement
During an interview in Caracas, Venezuela’s el Presidente Chávez said that if he were an American, he would vote for President Obama. I suspect he may have been truthful — an uncommon occurrence — about his views of President Obama if nothing else.
CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has weighed in on the U.S. presidential race, saying he prefers President Barack Obama.
Chavez also said in a televised interview that aired Sunday that he’d like to have “normal” relations with the U.S. government.
The Venezuelan leader says, in his words, “If I were American, I’d vote for Obama.”
Like President Obama, el Presidente Chávez is facing a tough reelection battle. The Venezuelan election is scheduled for just one week away, on October 7th. Might he have been trying to present a more moderate Chávez than previously? I don’t know; perhaps, or perhaps he was just flailing around. He has been doing a lot of that recently.
Chávez’ opponent is doing quite well even in Caracas. Here is a photo of his rally today.
This may be the first time during Chávez’ long time in office when he stands a better than even chance of defeat at the polls. Despite pontifications by our own beloved Former President Carter that the Venezuelan electoral system is the best in the world, massive fraud seems likely. Even if Capriles wins it does not necessarily mean, of course, that Chávez will relinquish the presidency. If he does not, civil war is possible.
What will the Chávez endorsement, considered separately, mean for President Obama’s chances of reelection? Probably little. The biggie should be tonight’s Univision Fast and Furious broadcast. Perhaps the Chávez endorsement will help Governor Romney, just a bit; the Univision broadcast should help a lot. Maybe the combined effect of both will be greater than of either separately.
(This article was also posted at Dan Miller’s Blog.)
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