2020 Hindsight Project:politicalization of Immigration
Interestingly, panel participants connected with the Trump campaign albeit negatively and expressed the following words to describe the connection ‘Irresponsibly’ ‘Disgusting’, ‘Dramatic’. Future media studies should consider how the ‘Trump Phenomenon’ dominated news cycles either positively and negatively by successfully utilizing sound-bite driven hype with the direct intent to not inform but agitate audiences and accrue social media capital.
Panel participants overwhelming did not feel a connection to the Hillary Clinton campaign and preferred to read Spanish language news on immigration because:
‘…they talk about both sides…like people from Mexico and people from here and like I said KTVU they don’t do that they just say the problem and change the subject quick’
‘I feel like in Spanish you get more, I think you get more kind of a sympathetic point of view and there’s more help that they kind of put out there, there’s like call this number or talk to a lawyer…’
Spanish-based news portrays a humane and community-based treatment of immigration. Political campaigns need an increased understanding and efficient use of Spanish-based news outlets to reach Latino voters, with the specific intent on embracing immigration as a human not political issue. The Hillary Clinton campaign clearly did not access the grass-roots human dimension of immigration nor utilize Spanish language news media to leverage the issue in the party’s favor. Candidates sympathetic to the cause of immigration, in the midterm and 2020 presidential elections must structure their campaign messaging to specifically attend to the needs of all communities effected by immigration. This process involves tactfully tapping into Spanish language based news.
Consistent with the data promoted by Pew Research Hispanic (2013), Latino Millennials on average remain tech-savvy, ahead of the curve on utilizing social media platforms to gather and share information. Unpacking how Spanish versus English language impacts news consumption adds a rich dimension for analysis, one which political and marketing campaigns alike need to account for to connect with, empower, inform and mobilize this dynamic and burgeoning demographic nationwide.
Focus Group Question Set
Q1) What news sources did you use to gather information about tonight's debate, specifically on immigration?
Q2) How important of a topic is immigration to you in determining who you will vote for?
Q3) Please describe how you think the Trump campaign has handled immigration in the news?
Q4) Please describe how you think the Clinton campaign has handled immigration in the news?
Q5) What specific issues concern you the most about immigration?
Q6) How much of your news reading is in print (paper)?
Q7) What print sources of news do you read?
Q8) How much of your news reading is digital (tablet, lap top, computer)?
(Q9) Do you read your news in Spanish or English?
(Q10) Do Spanish-language news media sources cover ‘immigration’ differently than English-language media? If so, how?
(Q11) How much of your news do you gather from social media?
(Q12) What social media sources do you use to gather news?
(Q13) Did Donald Trump winning the election change your level of interest in following the news?
(Q14) What news sources do you intend to use to gather information for the 2018 mid-term elections?
(Q15) What news sources do you intend to use to gather information for the 2020 Presidential elections?