Trump Is Correct, Harvard Study Confirms Media Bias Against Trump
Thomas Patterson, Harvard’s Bradlee Professor of Government and the Press, opened his study of “News Coverage of Donald Trump’s First 100 Days” by noting not only that President Trump was the topic of more than 40 percent of all news stories during his first 100 days (three times the amount of press coverage received by previous presidents), but also that the coverage he received “set … a new standard for unfavorable press coverage of a president.”
What’s surprising isn’t Patterson’s conclusion, which readers of The New American likely agree with, but the source: the Harvard Kennedy School’s Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy. Heavily influenced for decades by the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), Harvard would hardly likely be the source of a study showing and proving such mainstream media bias.
Nevertheless the 19-page study was released to the public on Thursday proving beyond all reasonable doubt that the mainstream media’s “fix” is in: to portray the 46th president of the United States in the worst possible light. Initially the mainstream media (MSM) was delighted to let Donald Trump take most of the headlines during his campaign for the Republican Party’s nominee. Wrote Patterson: “When he announced his presidential candidacy, journalists embraced him, and he returned the favor. Trump received far more coverage, and far more positive coverage, than did his Republican rivals.”
But following his nomination, and as his chances improved that he might actually win the presidency over the media’s favored candidate, the media chaned its tone dramatically: “Only after he had secured the Republican nomination did the press sharpen its scrutiny and, as his news coverage turned negative, Trump turned on the press.”
Trump specifically named six of the seven primary sources that Shorenstein’s study analyzed for bias: the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, CBS Evening News, CNN’s The Situation Room, and NBC Nightly News. The study also included Fox’s Special Report and three European news outlets: the Financial Times, the BBC, and ARD, Germany’s oldest public service broadcaster.
In one of his tweets about media bias, Trump declared that “the election is being rigged by the media, in a coordinated effort with the Clinton campaign” and, as Patterson expressed it, “it’s been a running battle ever since.”
Initially Trump was “a journalist’s dream” wrote Patterson, adding that “reporters are tuned to what’s new and different, better yet if it’s laced with controversy. Trump delivers that type of material by the shovel full. Trump was also good for business. News ratings were slumping until Trump entered the arena.”
Patterson stepped his way through the analysis, noting that “negative news reports outpaced positive ones by 80 percent to 20 percent … in no week did the coverage drop below 70 percent negative and it reached 90 percent negative at its peak.”
He noted that coverage by CNN and NBC “was the most unrelenting — negative stories about Trump outpaced positive ones by 13-to-1 on the two networks. Trump’s coverage on CBS also exceeded the 90 percent marker. Trump’s coverage exceeded the 80 percent level in the New York Times (87 percent negative) and Washington Post (83 percent negative). The Wall Street Journal came in below that level (70 percent negative), a difference largely attributable to the Journal’s more frequent and more favorable economic coverage.”
The MSM’s coverage during Trump’s first 100 days “was not merely negative in overall terms,” wrote Patterson, “[but] it was unfavorable in every dimension. There was not a single major topic where Trump’s coverage was more positive than negative.”
Some topics, such as Trump’s immigration policies, generated negative to positive ratios that exceeded 30-to-1. Coverage on healthcare reform and Russia’s alleged involvement were 87 percent negative, while MSM coverage of Trump’s appointees, his personal background, his foreign policy and defense positions “were at least 80 percent negative,” said Patterson.
It was all of a pattern, concluded Patterson: “When Trump’s category-by-category coverage was examined for each of the seven U.S. news outlets in our study, a consistent pattern emerged. The sources of Trump’s most and least negative coverage were similar for every outlet, except for Fox News.”
Patterson went further: the press’ coverage of Trump exceeded anything comparable to previous presidents:
Trump’s coverage during his first 100 days was negative even by the standards of today’s hyper-critical press. Studies of earlier presidents found nothing comparable to the level of unfavorable coverage afforded Trump … [media coverage] during his first 100 days … were 4-to-1 negative over positive….
The sheer level of negative coverage gives weight to Trump’s contention … that the media are hell bent on destroying his presidency. As he tweeted a month after taking office, “The FAKE NEWS media (failing @nytimes, @NBCNews, @ABC, @CBS, @CNN) is not my enemy, it is the enemy of the American People!”
Patterson noted that “the media’s credibility is at a low ebb [because of] a belief that journalists are biased.” The Harvard study proves it.
But the study doesn’t dwell on the coordination of efforts by the media to destroy the Trump presidency with its evident bias. One must look elsewhere for that. One of the best sources for understanding the CFR’s control of the Washington establishment was penned by Professor James Perloff, author of The Shadows of Power: The Council on Foreign Relations and the American Decline, in an article appearing at TheNewAmerican.com. Another source exposing the CFR’s history of infiltrating the mainstream media is that provided by Ned Dougherty.
Thanks to the surprising revelations from Harvard’s Shorenstein Center there’s no longer any need to speculate about the media’s deliberate determination to destroy the Trump administration with their biased reporting, if they can. As Patterson was closing his analysis, he noted that the battle will continue for as long as Trump is in office:
The news media gave Trump a boost when he entered presidential politics. But a head-on collision at some point was inevitable. It’s happened, it isn’t pretty, and it isn’t over.
Photo: AP Images
An Ivy League graduate and former investment advisor, Bob is a regular contributor to The New American magazine and blogs frequently at LightFromTheRight.com, primarily on economics and politics. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The media, political establishment, and bureaucratic deep state will stop at nothing to derail the President
PRESIDENT MUST DECLARE WAR ON MEDIA, THE TRUE ENEMY
May 20, 2017 By Jeff Crouere
The media smells blood in the Potomac River. They sense the President they hate could be removed from office. Never mind that he won a landslide, winning electoral votes in 31 states. The media hate the President’s agenda and they hate that he defied their wishes and expectations by winning last November.
What has happened since his election is the equivalent of an attempted media coup d’état. According to the Media Research Center (MRC), 89% of the coverage of President Trump by the network news programs of CBS, NBC and ABC has been negative. According to the MRC’s Rich Noyes, “the elite liberal media do not think that Donald Trump is worthy of being president. They don’t like his policies. They don’t like his character.”
CNN spent 92% of its’ air time on Trump stories with the clear majority of the reporting being downright hostile
Over the past week, this negative coverage has become even more intense and taken on a disturbing dimension. The MRC studied how CNN reported on the firing of FBI Director James Comey on May 12. During the day, the network featured 116 guests, but only 7, just 6%, could be identified as pro-Trump. The rest of the time, the network was bashing the President. Despite a host of other news stories, CNN spent 92% of its’ air time on Trump stories with the clear majority of the reporting being downright hostile.
In the last few days, liberal media outlets, Washington Post and New York Times, have released supposedly damaging information regarding the President. The first story, released on Monday by the Washington Post, alleged that the President divulged classified information with the Russian Foreign Minister in a White House meeting. This has been denied by General H.R. McMaster, the National Security Adviser, and by Russian President Vladimir Putin. In addition, the President can release any information he deems necessary and is not violating any laws. In contrast, Hillary Clinton mishandled reams of classified materials through her unsecure email server, but was never held to account.
On Tuesday, the New York Times reported that fired FBI Director James Comey kept detailed records of his meetings with President Trump. Reportedly, in one meeting, the President said to Comey that he “hoped” that the FBI would drop their investigation into fired National Security Adviser General Michael Flynn. Congressional Democrats and even some Republicans are now claiming “obstruction of justice,” discussing Watergate, the need for special prosecutors and even impeachment.
While Barack Obama was treated like a king, Donald Trump is treated like a criminal
This type of fantasy talk is being fueled by the leftist media, who desperately want to drive President Trump from office. The same media that acted like lap dogs during the Obama administration have now turned into vicious, rabies infested, attack dogs. The media are not playing their historic role of trying to keep the President honest. Instead, they are working day and night to overthrow a duly elected Commander-in-chief.
The media succeeded in forcing President Richard Nixon from office and they hate Donald Trump much more. While Barack Obama was treated like a king, Donald Trump is treated like a criminal. In the process, the media are overlooking major stories such as Susan Rice’s role in unmasking members of the Trump campaign and the criminal leaking of General Flynn’s name to the media.
The Trump hating media are also ignoring the latest bombshell involving former DNC staffer Seth Rich, who was murdered in Washington D.C. His case remains unsolved, but investigator Rod Wheeler claims that a media source has a contact who asserts that Rich provided DNC emails to WikiLeaks, the organization that released the embarrassing information. While the media and the Democrats constantly allege “Russian collusion” in the election to help Donald Trump and maintain that “Russians” hacked the DNC email account, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange maintains that it was not the Russians. In fact, the source could have been Rich and maybe that is why he was killed.
This potentially juicy story has been spiked by the mainstream news media so they can constantly opine about Trump scandals, impeachment, Watergate, James Comey, etc. Another day, another Trump scandal, but in the case of the “bombshell” Comey memo, the media is running the story even though they have not seen the memo and are quoting, once again, an anonymous source.
Objective journalism is now officially dead
While this diversion is happening, The President’s accomplishments are being ignored as the mainstream news media are working overtime to takedown a legitimately elected President. In the process, objective journalism is now officially dead.
In response to this media feeding frenzy, the President needs to eliminate the press briefings. It is time to treat the media as the enemy they are. The media do not care about the President’s domestic or foreign policy achievements. All they care to do is to perpetuate the so-called Russian collusion story.
The current frenzy is quite scary and could have a damaging impact on the country’s financial markets and standing overseas. Already, the stock market was down for the second week in a row and the value of the dollar is falling.
At this point, the American people must realize that the media have lost any semblance of balance. It could be why recent polls show that members of the media are not trusted and rank just above used car salesmen among all professions.
The only media giving the President any semblance of fair treatment is Fox News, talk radio and certain Internet sites. From now on, the President needs to stop giving interviews to the mainstream news outlets. No more exclusive interviews for liberal hacks like Lester Holt of NBC or John Dickerson of CBS. The members of the Trump administration should boycott those shows as well and only give interviews to fair and balanced programs, which are few and far between.
The President needs his communication staff to be more aggressive and respond quickly and vigorously to false media stories. In addition, some staffers are providing the liberal media juicy leaks, sometimes with damaging and inaccurate information. The result is that he is not being well served and his agenda is being sabotaged. Of course, the media are enjoying the leaks, distracting the public from the President’s accomplishments and publishing titillating stories.
During this media firestorm, it is a battle for the survival of the Trump administration and his reform agenda. The media, political establishment, and bureaucratic deep state will stop at nothing to derail the President. Moving forward, Mr. Trump must battle back against the media and overhaul his team for there are many pitched battles looming on the horizon.
The common element in nearly all the major New York Times and Washington Poststories about President Donald Trump this week is that they are based on source documents the outlets cannot authenticate, do not possess, admit are partial, and refuse to share.
Friday’s supposed “bombshell” stories follow the same pattern. The Times reports that Trump told the visiting Russians that former FBI director James Comey was a “nut job,” and that firing him had eased “pressure” in his ability to conduct foreign policy — though the Times takes Trump to mean the legal pressure of the investigation. (That spin makes no sense: firing Comey created more pressure, which was so obvious the Russians joked about it.)
The Times describes its source as “a document summarizing the meeting” that was “circulated” (it does not say by whom). The Times does not have the document. An “American official” simply “read quotations” to the Times.
The Post‘s story, which reports that the probe into potential ties between Russia and the Trump campaign has reached “someone close to the president,” cites “people familiar with the matter.” That does not prove the story is untrue, but the sources are so flimsy that there is no way to have confidence in what the Post calls its “revelation.”
Earlier this week, the Post reported that House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) told a meeting of fellow House Republican leaders: “I think Putin pays [Trump].” According to those present, the remark was a joke. The Post‘s source was an audio recording of the conversation which it did not have in its actual possession, and which it refuses to share with the public so that people can judge for themselves. The Post did publish a transcript, which it does not appear to have produced itself. The transcript actually supports the claim that McCarthy was joking. The Post‘s reporter has insisted that McCarthy meant his remark to be taken seriously, but refuses to provide the audio.
And the day before that, the Times published the now-infamous story that Trump had “asked” Comey to end the investigation into former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn. The source was purportedly a memorandum that Comey wrote about his recollection of a conversation with Trump. But the Times did not share the memo, and never even saw the document. It merely relied on a Comey “associate” who “read parts of it to a Times reporter.”
These four stories, taken together, are said by the mainstream media to build a powerful case that Trump committed obstruction of justice and may soon face impeachment. But every piece of evidence could be made up or distorted, and there would be no way to know. In the “nut job” case, the White House has not disputed that Trump made the comment, but it may not be able to explain the context, because doing so would mean releasing more details of a classified conversation that touched on “highly classified” national security matters (as the Post reported on Monday.)
In their effort to impugn Trump, the Times and the Post violate the most basic journalistic standards. Publishing parts of a document that you do not possess and cannot verify, and timing the release to cause maximum political damage (right after the president leaves the country), is not investigative journalism. It is political propaganda.
It is the mirror image of what the Los Angeles Times did in April 2008, when it published a story referring to a speech then-State Senator Barack Obama gave at a farewell celebration for radical Palestinian-American academic Rashid Khalidi in 2003. The Times was given a video of the speech, but refused to publish the video. Instead, it offered a mere summary, raising suspicions that the Times had sanitized the event to protect Obama’s presidential campaign.
The pattern is the same, from the Khalidi tape to the “nut job” story. For the elite mainstream media, when it comes to protecting Democrats or attacking Republicans, there are no journalistic standards, no ethics, and no shame.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He was named one of the “most influential” people in news media in 2016. He is the co-author of How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.
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