A George Soros-backed group has bought multiple Spanish-language radio stations across the US in a bid to win over Hispanic voters ahead of the 2022 mid-term elections, according to a report.
Group With No Radio Experience
The Washington Times said that the Soros-backed group has been identified as Latino Media Network, which is run by Stephanie Valencia and Jess Morales Rocketto. The report says the group does not have experience running radio networks.
The report also says the group was actively involved in the elections campaigns of Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. According to the Miami Herald, Stephanie Valencia, Latino Media Network co-founder, was a special assistant to Obama and holds 55 percent in the entity.
The move has come in the backdrop of the strong swing in the traditionally pro-Democrat Hispanic voters in favor of the Republicans ahead of the crucial midterms. The people behind the move claim that they intend to counter the GoP 'disinformation' that is poaching voters.
However, the the Times says experts have rubbished the claim. "This is not about disinformation. This is about power, this is about control, this is about funneling Hispanics into 'approved' sources of news and entertainment," Jorge Bonilla of the Media Research Center said.
What is Latino Media Network?
Latino Media Network (LMN) has raised $80 million to fund the purchase. Some of its funding came from Lakestar Finance, which has close relations with billionaire George Soros, the report says.
According to the Miami Herald, Lakestar Finance LLC is an investment entity affiliated with Soros Fund Management. The outlet says that Latino Media Network has stated that it secured financing from entities including Lakestar Finance.
"The network will embrace cultural pride by telling Latino stories, addressing community concerns and talking about opportunities for a better future," LMN says.
The 18 radio stations that LMN has purchased are located in cities like New York, Miami, Houston, Chicago, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Fresno, Dallas, San Antonio and McAllen. Spanish is the second most widely spoken language in the US after English, with an estimated 40 million using it as their first language.
Some of the prominent radio stations bought by LMN include WAQI and WQBA which have deep reach inside the Hispanic communities.
According to an NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll in April, Latino voters are likely to vote Republicans by a huge 52%-39% margin, the National Review had reported.
Last week, CNN reported that Hispanic voters are swinging in favor of the Republicans in an unprecedented manner.
A recent survey report by Axios titled 'The Great Realignment' showed that Democrats are now statistically tied with Republicans ahead of the 2022 midterm elections when it in congressional ballots when it comes to the Hispanic vote. This is a huge setback for the Democrats considering that in 2018 they had a 47-point advantage against the GoP in Hispanic votes.
Fox News cites a Hispanic voter as saying: "The Democrats really lost working-class people ... These people have absolutely lost their minds. There is no way we could vote for them, especially when Republicans have been more focused on the issues that matter."