Photo: Pete Souza

Photo: Pete Souza

This week, the Media Research Center, in partnership with American Principles Project, released a report on bias in Hispanic media. And the results were shocking.

After reviewing 667 stories on U.S. domestic policy, the study determined that six times as many stories tilted liberal as tilted conservative. The top three topics were immigration law enforcement, immigration reform legislation in Congress, and Obamacare—a counterintuitive finding, given that, according to a recent Gallup poll, the number one issue for Hispanics is the economy.

This report was released in conjunction with a panel discussion at the Newseum, which Sen. Rand Paul (R–Ky.) kicked off with a compelling explanation of how conservatives could better connect to Hispanics.

According to Senator Paul, there are two primary things conservatives must do to better engage Hispanic media: 1) They must show up; and 2) They must have something to say. Paul said that conservatives need to go into Hispanic communities and listen to concerns. Then, once members are on Hispanic media, they need to have something to say.

Paul cited a number of policies that could resonate with Hispanic voters, including the creation of economic prosperity zones in which cities with high unemployment would substantially lower taxes in order to create jobs.

Heritage Libertad Director Israel Ortega also appeared on the panel, along with Republican National Committee Hispanic Media Communications Director Izzy Santa, LIBRE Initiative Executive Director Daniel Garza, Media Research Center President Brent Bozell, and Senator Paul.

Photo: MRC Latino

L-R: Alfonso Aguilar, Executive Director of the Latino Partnership for Conservative Principles, Daniel Garza, Executive Director of The Libre Initiative, Izzy Santa, Hispanic Media Communications Director, and Heritage Libertad Director Israel Ortega. Photo: MRC Latino

Drawing on his successes at Heritage Libertad, Ortega exhorted conservatives to engage Hispanic media outlets, and ask to be placed on relevant email lists—regardless of their ability to speak Spanish. Conservatives, argued Ortega, need to be prepared to discuss a whole range of topics with Hispanic media, and shouldn’t be afraid of any issue.

Daniel Garza, citing a Pew Research study, pointed out that if 32 percent of Hispanics are conservatives and 30 percent are independent, then a Left-leaning Hispanic media doesn’t reflect its audience’s diversity of thought. There is, Garza believes, a concerted effort being made to silence conservative voices in Hispanic media. For example, Garza pointed out that when a conservative point-of-view is described, it is often referred to as “radical or extreme.”