A full year after Romney launched his presidential bid, the campaign doesn’t have a Spanish version of its website, nor has it hired a Spanish-speaking spokesperson. Romney boycotted a primary debate on Univision, leading to the event’s collapse, and, to date, he has only done one sit-down interview on a national Spanish network. The apparent apathy has left Latino advocates — and more than a few Republicans — baffled, wondering whether the campaign has already written off one of the fastest-growing demographics in the country.
Asked about the campaign’s approach to Spanish media, senior adviser Eric Fehrnstrom said they were still beefing up their communications operation — which had been “threadbare throughout the primaries” — and pointed to Spanish language ads the campaign aired during the Florida primary.
But one Republican operative with ties to the campaign said Boston’s Spanish media strategy hasn’t yet been developed, and insisted, “I’ll be advocating for them to work more with Univision and other [outlets].” The campaign did not respond to further questions about their approach…
As the campaign develops its message for Latino voters, it will also have to reckon with the fact that much of the Spanish-language media is stacked against Romney. Most notably, Univision — by far, the largest Spanish media outlet in the country — has been an outspoken champion of left-leaning immigration reform, putting its editorial stance in direct opposition to Romney’s platform. What’s more, conservatives often grumbled that the network is owned, in part, by Democratic donor Haim Saban. Since the Saban Group acquired the network in 2006, Obama has appeared on their airwaves 15 times.