Univision CEO Asks Commission to Reconsider Debate Moderators

By Mark Joyella 

Univision chief executive Randy Falco has written to the Commission on Presidential Debates, expressing “disappointment, and frankly disbelief” at the decision not to include a Spanish-language moderator for the upcoming series of presidential debates.

“Simply put: it’s an abdication of your responsibility to represent and reflect one of the largest and most influential communities in the U.S,” Falco writes in the letter, addressed to commission executive director Janet Brown.

Friday morning, the commission announced its choices for the three presidential and one vice presidential debates. The presidential debate moderators are all from English-language television: Lester Holt of NBC News, Martha Raddatz of ABC News, Anderson Cooper of CNN, and Chris Wallace of Fox News.

CBS News’ Elaine Quijano was chosen to moderate the vice presidential debate. “The inclusion of CBS’ Elaine Quijano as a moderator for the Vice Presidential debate is certainly a welcome addition but seems insufficient when taking into account past presidential cycles, future demographic trends and the important role Latinos play in the economic and social fabric of this great nation,” writes Falco, who says given the significant size and influence of the Hispanic population, a Spanish-language journalist should be involved in moderating the debates:

We ask again for you to reconsider leaving a Spanish-language moderator out of the presidential debate panels. As always, we stand ready to create additional venues where the Committee and the candidates can focus on Latinos. The Hispanic community will play a pivotal role in electing the next President and in all federal elections for the foreseeable future. We look forward to working with the Commission to address what we believe to be a troubling trend – the lack of the Hispanic perspective – and hope we can forge a new path forward.