In spite of overt animosity by the media toward President Donald Trump, the president still draws support from a significant portion of the American people, in greater numbers than former President Barack Obama did at the same point in his presidency.
The establishment media’s negativity has been quantified by the Media Research Center, folks who spend their time studying nearly everything said and done by them on air and in print.
An MRC study viewed more than 1,000 hours of network news coverage — ABC, CBS and NBC — from June to September of 2018. The study found that 92 percent of the coverage related to Trump during that period was negative in tone, as compared to a mere 8 percent that was positive.
Further, the study revealed that more than two-thirds of the network’s coverage — or more than 660 of the 1,000-plus hours — was devoted to only five main topics: the Russia investigation, illegal immigration, the Brett Kavanaugh nomination, and the state of U.S. relations with both North Korea and Russia.
Noticeably absent from that list was reports on the booming economy — which all the media analysts and experts had predicted couldn’t be revived after Obama’s eight years of economic stagnation, though they framed it as the “new normal” — which accounted for a mere 0.7 percent of the coverage, or about 14 minutes total out of 1,000-plus hours.
Despite those dire and dismissive predictions, Trump’s efforts to cut taxes and roll back regulations resulted in a surge of economic activity that has led to historically low unemployment rates, rising wages and median household incomes, a strong and growing gross domestic product rate and the creations of millions of jobs.
Nevertheless, in spite of the incessantly negative coverage by the media and their narrow focus on Trump’s “scandals” — some real, most not — President Trump’s approval ratings have remained fairly steady for the most part, and are higher than his predecessor’s approval ratings were at the same point in his presidency.
The Rasmussen Approval Index History for Trump, which provides the spread between those who “strongly” approve and disapprove of the president, as well as his total approval and disapproval rating, had an approval index rating of -7 for Trump on Feb. 21, 2019.
That -7 index is the difference between the 35 percent who “strongly approve” and 42 percent who “strongly disapprove” of Trump, while his overall rating was 49 percent approved to 50 percent disapproved of his job performance.
In comparison, the Rasmussen Approval Index History for Obama on Feb. 21, 2011, the equivalent point in Obama’s first term, showed he had approval index of -18 points. Obama was “strongly approved” by only 23 percent of Americans, while 41 percent “strongly disapproved” of him. In total, Obama had an overall approval rate of 44 percent as compared to a disapproval rate of 55 percent.
Of course, there was also a vast disparity in the tone of media coverage between those two presidents, as while most coverage of Trump is decisively negative, the media’s coverage of Obama was nearly a constant glow of positivity and thinly veiled support.
The media can and will slam Trump for every real or perceived misstep — and Trump has certainly earned negative coverage from time to time, to be fair — but the incessant negativity appears to have had little effect on the American people, who it would seem are able to see past the media’s overt anti-Trump bias and judge the president by his accomplishments and policies, rather than simply accept the biased media’s negative version of events in order to form their own opinion.
- By Ben Marquis | Western Journal