Latin American news media cover the Presidential campaign, and McCain is invisible

I have been visiting Latin American TV and newspaper websites for the past four years, and their coverage doesn’t differ much from that of American media. For starters, both the US and Latin American media rely heavily on the international news agencies such as Reuters, AP, AFP, and in Latin America, EFE.

What’s interesting is the predominance of Obama stories over McCain’s. At times one feels that McCain is a nearly-invisible candidate that surfaces occasionally and which may or may not be in the running, if one is to go by how frequently his name is mentioned. The thorough coverage on Obama is almost-universally favorable, sometimes even glamorous. When he is criticized in editorials, the criticism is followed by detailed advice on what he should do to win.

Here’s a roundup of papers and TV websites, all of them in Spanish or Portuguese.

Puerto Rico: Being a Commonwealth with millions of Puerto Ricans residing in the Continental US (where they can vote in the national elections), Puerto Ricans follow the race closely, and just this Tuesday El Nuevo Dia reported that the Obama campaign had named three Puerto Rican advisors to his Hispanic Advisory Board. They are Rep. Luis Gutiérrez and Nydia Velázquez, Bronx County president Adolfo Carrión, and Rev. Wilfredo de Jesús of Chicago’s New Life Covenant Ministries. The article also states that Obama’s neutral on the statehood/Commonwealth/independence issue and promises he’ll improve Puerto Rico’s access to Federal programs.

This same story, with fewer details, was carried by newspapers in Chile, Mexico, and Argentina.

Argentina: Argentinian newspapers don’t post many stories on line. One of the few stories on the campaign, by Hugo Alconada Mon writing for La Nacion reports that Oprah Winfrey delivers an estimated 1 million voters for Obama, according to an estimate by Timothy Moore and Craig Garthwaite of the University of Maryland at College Park. Alconada wonders what the numbers would be if another celebrity, without the media empire, had done the endorsement.

TN Todo Noticias TV channel has seven videos of Obama, mostly of his trip to Germany, and none of McCain. Reporter Andres Repetto narrates, as Obama walks to the outdoor podium,

“His motto is ‘Change’ and ‘Yes we can’. Barack Obama this week seeked to show the American electorate how far away they are from understanding what’s going on in the world.”

The banner on the lower part of the screen read, “The global campaign. Barack Obama goes out to seduce the world”.

Brazil: O Globo has probably the most comprehensive coverage in all of South America. Their page on American politics showed headlines:

Speculation on VP choices energizes the US

Candidates hope Musharraf’s resignation will stabilize Pakistan

Obama’s July fundraising nearly doubles that of McCain

Fight for evangelicals not the first by the candidates

Cindy McCain injury sends her to hospital

Angelina Jolie undecided between Obama and McCain

Some of the stories (Angelina’s and Cindy’s) were by the usual news services, but most are original reporting and commentary, since O Globo has correspondents in the USA.

The candidate profiles, however, offer more information on how the newspaper views them: Notice the error on Obama’s Senate career (my translation):
Obama’s profile: “Protestant, descendant of Muslims, Barack OBama, 47, the first black to run for the White House for a major party. His name means “blessed” in Swahili, one of Kenya’s two languages, where his family has roots. Senator for Illinois since 1996, he’s married and has two daughters.”

McCain’s profile: “At age 71, war veteran John McCain runs for the Presidency for the first time. In 2000 he lost the Republican primaries to George W. Bush. Retired from the military, he was elected senator for Arizona in 1986. He’s been reelected three times to this day. He’s married and has seven children.”

While Obama’s profile emphasizes his Kenyan roots for the Brazilian audience with a large number of descendants of Africans, and doesn’t differentiate between the Illinois Senate and the US Senate (therefore making him appear to have a lot more national experience), the McCain profile emphasizes his age, and his military background (while not mentioning he was a POW of the Viet Cong), when many in Brazil do not have positive feelings towards the military.

Colombia:

El Tiempo, writing that Obama will make his choice for VP known sometime between Wednesday or Thursday, points to Joe Biden’s weekend visit to Georgia, saying that

”The crisis in Georgia… is a reminder of how much Obama needs a running mate who is well versed in foreign policy matters.”

The article has 19 paragraphs, five of which mention McCain and the Republicans – at the bottom of the page. The photo featured in the article shows Obama in full celebrity mode, getting out of a car, campaign schedule on one hand, apple on the other, wearing sunglasses and waiving to the media.

Definitely a glamour shot.

Costa Rica: La Nación features a newsfeed of EFE, AFP, and AP items which is frequently updated. The editorial page is focused entirely on local issues. Other Costa Rican newspapers don’t carry any stories on the US presidential race at all, since they are aimed for Costa Ricans searching for local information.

Mexico: The most in-depth coverage on line from the Mexican media can be found at El Universal, which posts news from the international news services and original reporting throughout the day in both the print version and the TV section. El Universal also has its own You Tube Channel. El Universal has several correspondents in the US.

Today’s editorial focused on Obama’s proposed renegotiation of the Free Trade Agreement with Mexico. Of the top 15 stories listed, 15 mentioned Obama in the title or in the stories’ descriptions, while only three mentioned McCain.

El Universal’s editorial board wants Obama to win: This editorial calls Obama arrogant, reminds him that Lopez Obrador’s arrogance cost him the presidency, and advises him to abandon protectionism and isolationism, and win by proposing a new economic policy, along with choosing Bill Richardson as his running mate.

Here in the USA, Telemundo and Univision, which also are available via cable in Latin America and the Caribbean, report daily on the Presidential race.

Telemundo’s covereage is less extensive than Univision but then Telemundo is owned of GE, which also owns NBC, CNBC, and MSNBC where the presidential race is covered in depth.

Univision has a webpage with videos, reports, updates, and an informal survey. The Univision online survey results today favor Obama 3:1 over McCain, not surprising in a webpage that features the station’s favorite soap opera stars modeling Obama underwear. No McCain-themed underwear was available.

If you would like to follow Latin American coverage of the Presidential race, the Hispanic Center for Economic Research (HACER) is a great resource listing Latin American newspapers, magazines, and TV and radio stations.

UPDATE
Last month IBD explored A Lousy Latin Lover

Foreign Policy: Following Barack Obama’s European tour, Bill Richardson has big plans for the candidate to visit Latin America next. But a look at what Obama has in store doesn’t give the region much to look forward to.

For instance,

• Guatemala: Obama can tell Guatemalans he voted “no” on their free-trade deal, attempting to shut the tiny democracy out of access to the world’s biggest market, though it cost American workers nothing. There’s more: His endorsers in the AFL-CIO want Guatemala’s treaty revoked permanently over a few labor violations instead of working with them to a solution.

Go read the rest.

Lousy lover, indeed.

IBD Blogs

Fausta analyses the Latin American press, a notorious leftist one, and finds that even in rightwing countries like Colombia, it’s overwhelmingly pro-Obama. No wonder Obama has the supposed approval of most Latin American countries, despite his opposition to free trade and adherence to ethanol tariffs – the locals haven’t even heard of McCain! This is a real dereliction of duty.

Meanwhile, in the Netherlands

The Party for Freedom (PVV) considers that public broadcaster NPS is giving a disproportionately large amount of attention to US presidential candidate Barack Obama and is thereby conveying a picture of Republican candidate John McCain having no chance in the race for the White House.

(h/t Gates of Vienna)
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11 Responses to “Latin American news media cover the Presidential campaign, and McCain is invisible”

  1. Angelina Jolie | Latin American news media cover the Presidential campaign, and McCain is invisible Says:

    […] I have been visiting Latin American TV and newspaper websites for the past four years, and their coverage doesn’t differ much from that of American media. For starters, both the US and Latin American media rely heavily on the international news agencies such as Reuters, AP, AFP, and in Latin America … Source: Latin American news media cover the Presidential campaign, and McCain is invisible […]

  2. steveegg Says:

    The Morning Scramble – 8/23/2008…

    Yes it’s very late (or very early depending on one’s perspective), but the O’Biden ticket is a guarantee of full blogging for those of us right-of-center, and I need to party…

    I promise to not do too much……

  3. Pat Patterson Says:

    It’s a circulation ploy so that after the election if McCain wins then the headline for El Nuevo Dia can read, “Quien es ese?” But making very sure they again have the very photogenic Cindy McCain in clear focus. Chauvanista tipicos!

  4. Jacque Denise Yap Says:

    Obama is poking the kind of change that history has proven to fail. In a free society you can not over burden or oppress its most productive elements. These individuals will find another way, especially in our now global economy. Look what the left did to Halliburton. The company now pays -0- taxes because they moved to Dubai. Way to go Dems. It has been said that when you are 20 if you are not a lib..you have no Heart and when you have reached 40 if you are not a conservative …you have no BRAIN.saw their TV ads in http://pollclash.com

  5. ronbothunter Says:

    WHEN THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT OPPOSES YOUR RIGHT TO BE FREE!!

    Puerto Ricans, whether they are called Independents (independentistas), Patriots or Nationalists or Freemen, who desire to be free, must always know that the federal government, here in the States has no “subject matter jurisdiction” over the person, case or location and should be challenged to proof it. These are magic words to learn when in Court for desiring freedom for your/our Country.

    You won’t be told this in court but: All jury members, judges, attorneys, and employees working in federal court, must reside in federal territory to legally be a federal juror or touch your case or they can be commercially sued, disbarred and financially ruined for violating your constitutional rights etc.

    Your god given right to be free is not wanted by the USA, it will oppose your desire for independence and freedom, because the Federal USA is a profit based Corporation.

    The Federal Government is a District of Columbia “Corporation”, as are all the States of the USA. These Corporations were formed for the benefit of the real owners. Since June of 1933, everything since then, is under Contract law or commercial law, aka Admiralty law, to benefit your masters in power.

    The Federal Government owns Puerto Rico as an ASSET, because it is a slave colony—whether you like the idea or not. But the Federal Government takes orders from those who own and run this (Corporation) Country, but are not of this country. The International Bankers, who really own the corporations called the USA, will let PR be free, only if enough real men of Boricua blood wish to be free, by reserving their rights under the Constitution. Their books will be adjusted and we will be free.

    The answer to your freedom lies in your Constitutional rights — To win –You must always reserve your constitutional, commercial rights and know what they are and how to do so.

    The USA has been the biggest alien invaders the world has ever known. In order to win your freedom, you must oppose them by knowing that their weakness lies in their violations and in their treasons to the Constitution and to the common law and common law remedies.

    The majority of Americans have no idea that the USA has killed more Latinos, than Hitler Killed Jews, The USA has supported Traitors, Dictators, Gringitos, Butchers, Sociopaths, and Megalomaniacs who were supported and kept in power by these monsters, sucking up to the Anglo Alien Invaders.

    Latin America has had enough of this form of genocide of Latinos. That includes other African, Asian etc. countries that lost millions of innocent people from USA aggression.

    I want to vomit every time some ignorant fools says: “If you don’t like it here –go home”.

    If the Alien Invaders would get out of each and every Latin Country and stop interfering in our affairs—it would make sense to say such a stupid thing. But unless the (Feds) Snakes get out of Latin America-we have just as much right to be here!!! So, grin and put up with it—this was once our land.

    A Puerto Rican without a desire for independence and/or freedom from alien control has no heart and soul of a man.

    The fact that the public does not know that we are NOT free, makes no difference, to the desire to be free. The PR that wants Statehood is a Gringito, who has no soul of a man left in his traitor’s heart. Freedom is happening all over the world and yet we allow Gringitos to kill our right to be free.

    A Gringito is a non-Anglo THING, IT is not really a “person”, just like a mass murderer is more like an animal than a person, who internally is so inferior, that he desires to be what he can not be—thus Gringito means little gringo.

    The Gringito is like an Uncle Tom to blacks or a collaborator and traitor to many others. To us he/she is all three and much worst. “It” is the enemy of freedom all thru out HUMAN history.

    We allow the Alien Invaders to kill, harm, abuse, rape, and scam us and yet the Gringito wants to give our Country away.

    This abuse must end. No man or woman is a real Man or real woman who is too scared to fight for their souls and be free. If you listen to the Gringito, you will lose your soul.

    Thru out eternity Humanity owes its freedom from slavery, ONLY to brave souls who fought for your right to be free.

    The fight will NOT succeed if you don’t fight the Gringito enemy/traitor/collaborator at home first. He is there next door and claims he is a real man and tries to give you many excuses of why PR can’t be a free Country.

    To give away your/our/my Country is not a right of alien invaders, visitors or foreigners with NO Puerto Rican Blood.

    The right to vote on THIS ISSUE should NOT be given to NON-Puerto Ricans.

    The fight for the independence of Puerto Rico is now non-violent and will be won in the hearts of real men around the World.

    The Ronbothunter,

    A proud freedom loving Puerto Rican.

    All Rights Reserved

  6. Fausta’s Blog » Blog Archive » Headlines, in today’s 15 Minutes on Latin America Says:

    […] Related post from a month ago here. […]

  7. Fausta’s Blog » Blog Archive » The day-before-the-presidential-election Carnival of Latin America and the Caribbean Says:

    […] This week’s big story: The US presidential election. If McCain wins, it’ll be interesting if the Latin American media will acknowledge McCain’s existence. […]

  8. Fausta’s Blog » Blog Archive » World newspapers’ reaction to the Obama victory: Says:

    […] Post from last August: Latin American news media cover the Presidential campaign, and McCain is invisible […]

  9. Presidential Race On Best Political Blogs » Blog Archive » Latin American news media cover the Presidential campaign, and… Says:

    […] Latin American news media cover the Presidential campaign, and… The editorial page is focused entirely on local issues. Other Costa Rican newspapers don’t carry any stories on the US presidential race at all… […]

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  11. Sibani’s Blog Says:

    […] http://faustasblog.com/?p=5629 […]