His work often involves stories on trade throughout the Americas, immigration to the United States, inflation rates in other countries and political and social controversies in the the U.S. and abroad.
He covered events in New York on Sept. 11, 2001, the Elian Gonzalez matter in Florida and more recently the normalization of U.S.-Cuba relations. He has also been involved in covering drug kingpin Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman's prison break and the related manhunt, as well as political protests related to high-level corruption scandals in Latin America this year.
Lopez has interviewed a number of politicians, including Hillary Clinton, the late Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez, deposed Honduran president Manuel Zelaya and his successors; as well as former Colombian leader Alvaro Uribe, Mexico's former president Vicente Fox and Panama's Ricardo Martinelli. And back in the United States, he has covered both both the Republican and Democratic Party conventions.
Last week alone, Lopez covered the congressional hearing where U.S. officials took responsibility for the mistaken bombing of a Doctor's Without Borders hospital in Kunduz, Afghanistan, and helped to tell Spanish-speaking viewers about Myriam Witcher, the Colombian American woman who Trump brought up on stage at an event where she promptly professed her commitment to the Trump campaign.
If you need more evidence, check out the wide range of topics Lopez tweeted about in the last few days. Then, if you don't speak Spanish, make use of that Google translate button up top. You will get a rough but very clear idea.
And if that's not enough prep work for the debate, Lopez's moderator skills get a regular workout. He's the host of CNN en Español's weekly debate program "Choque de Opiniones" (that translates roughly to "Clash of Opinions") and a daily news show, "Directo USA." His role on the latter program is what the New York Times called CNN en Español's Wolf Blitzer.
Lopez is also regular contributor to CNN's English language programs. And some of CNN en Español's programing featuring Lopez also appears on Sirius XM radio. It's also worth noting that, while some English-speakers may not know Lopez, CNN en Español is available in 30 million homes. Those houses stretch “from Alaska to Patagonia,” according to CNN executives. And Lopez has been nominated for Emmy Awards twice — once just this year in the Outstanding Newscast or News Magazine in Spanish category.
Perhaps that's why Lopez's official CNN en Español job title — presentador y corresponsal en jefe (chief anchor and correspondent) — seems to pretty much fit. But to be perfectly honest, there's not a lot of personal information out there on Lopez. There's not even a Wikipedia page of questionable quality dedicated to the journalist.
On a semi-personal note, we do know this: Lopez is a native of Colombia and began his career as a TV reporter in Bogota before moving to Miami and working for Univision. Lopez joined CNN in the 1990s and moved over to CNN en Español when the company founded the network in 2000. So like Bash and Cooper, he's been with CNN for a long time.
And in an August interview with the Venezuelan newspaper, El Universal, Lopez told a reporter that he's thankful to work as a journalist in the United States. In the United States, people may not like what a reporter writes or airs, but journalists are rarely killed or jailed in connection with their work, he said. Lopez pointed out that in Mexico, the United States' neighbor, and many other countries, the situation is quite different. (Here's a link for those who can read Spanish.)
Lopez earned his journalism degree at Javerina University in Bogota and spent time studying at the New Iberoamerican Journalism Foundation — an organization founded by acclaimed Colombian and Nobel Prize-winningnovelist Gabriel Garcia Marquez, who died in 2014.
So it's fair to say that Lopez has swum with big fish in more than one country.