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Report: Media Coverage of Trump in 2017 Was Overwhelmingly Negative

Report: Media Coverage of Trump in 2017 Was Overwhelmingly Negative

Wanna bet 2018 won’t be better?

The Media Research Center (MRC) analyzed the media’s coverage of President Donald Trump in 2017 and found, unsurprisingly, that their reports were mostly negative.

MRC found:

■ The Trump presidency was the biggest story of the year, accounting for one out of every three minutes of evening news airtime — nearly 100 hours in total.

■ The tone of coverage has been incessantly hostile, especially for a new President in his honeymoon year: 90% negative, vs. just 10% positive (These percentages do not include neutral statements).

■ More than two-fifths of evening news coverage of the President (43%) focused on controversies, not policies, with the Russia investigation alone accounting for one-fifth of all Trump coverage (1,234 minutes).

■ Despite their massive coverage of Russia, the networks had almost no airtime for questions about how the investigation began, or whether special counsel Robert Mueller’s current investigation is biased.

Look, I’m no fan of Trump. I’m a libertarian and voted for Gary Johnson. However, I find the media coverage of Trump disgusting. I cannot remember how many times this year I said, “Out of all the things they can report on Trump, THIS is what they choose?!” Like controversies instead of actual policy. MRC noted:

A Huge Percentage of Network News Coverage Focused on Controversies, Not Policy: More than two-fifths of evening news coverage of the Trump administration (43%, or 42 hours, 37 minutes) centered on various controversies associated with the President and his top aides. The Russia investigation was the networks’ favorite topic, with an astonishing 20 hours, 34 minutes of coverage, or more than one-fifth of all Trump coverage last year.

Discussion of all public policy issues combined amounted to 46 hours, 58 minutes of coverage, or roughly 47 percent of all Trump coverage. The five most-frequently covered policy issues: the effort to repeal and replace ObamaCare (475 minutes); the nuclear showdown with North Korea (364 minutes); immigration policy, including ramped-up deportations and a potential border wall (258 minutes); the temporary travel ban and the ensuing court fight (251 minutes); and the ultimately successful push for comprehensive tax reform (222 minutes).

TAX REFORM received such little coverage and it makes me ill. Even when they did cover the tax reform, I personally found the news would either stretch the truth or flat out lie. I found many long run problems within tax reform (you know, like not cutting spending with the tax cuts, which will lead to major problems when the tax cuts expire) that I couldn’t believe the media chose not to cover it.

MRC also found that the media had a lot of coverage on possible Russian-Trump election coverage, but hardly any scrutiny of Special Counsel Robert Mueller:

Yet very little of the airtime devoted to the Russia investigation was spent looking into how the inquiry into Team Trump first began, or whether Mueller’s current investigation is biased. Suggestions that Obama administration officials had improperly “unmasked” Trump officials caught up in foreign surveillance garnered just 20 minutes of evening news coverage, or less than two percent of the Russia total. Evening news coverage of the uncorroborated anti-Trump dossier, which we eventually learned was financed by the Clinton campaign’s lawyer, amounted to a mere 15 minutes of airtime.

While the media subjected Clinton-era independent counsel Ken Starr to harsh scrutiny, any doubts raised about Mueller and his team have been given little airtime. The three evening newscasts spent a combined 11 minutes (less than 1% of their Russia coverage) on the biased anti-Trump text messages exchanged between an FBI agent and an FBI lawyer, both of whom had worked on the investigation. Criticism that the Mueller team had improperly obtained e-mails written by Trump officials during the transition period was given barely five minutes of airtime, (or less than 0.5% of the total Russia coverage).

From what I have seen so far, 2018 will not be any better. In fact, I complained to Professor Jacobson yesterday about how the media was still obsessed over the shithole comment instead of concentrating on the shutdown that may occur on Friday.


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The “shithole” comment and the Shutdown are intrinsically linked. The Dems have decided they are going to go to the wall and force a shutdown, and they have convinced themselves they will win that fight by chanting “shithole, shithole, shithole” over and over.

As John Hinderaker has pointed out, this was a DELIBERATE move made by Dick Durbin and the rest of the dem leadership to torpedo negotiations and go for broke when it started to look like they were going Trump’s way.

So now it is an all in game of Chicken. I profoundly believe we WILL see some form of shutdown now, on the Dem’s insistence. They think they will win. Trump thinks they will not. We will get to see how it plays out in real time.

    notamemberofanyorganizedpolicital in reply to Tom Servo. | January 16, 2018 at 1:59 pm

    RE: “The “shithole” comment and the Shutdown are intrinsically linked.”

    Agreed. So we should call it the Democrat Party Shitdown?

    I am reminded of the time I was watching a toddler relative of mine and happened to use the word ‘poot’ when he farted.

    For the next several hours, and for a week at least after his parents took him home, he repeated the word endlessly.

    Now we have the MSM, and their determination to break the toddler’s record.

    Excuse me, can we have some adults report the news, please?

    stevewhitemd in reply to Tom Servo. | January 16, 2018 at 4:29 pm

    I can’t say for sure that it was deliberate, but there’s no question that Durbin is an opportunist with a fine sense of political cunning.

    Yes, the Democrats are laying the groundwork to blame the Pubs — once again — for the shutdown that they, the Democrats, are instigating.

    With all that, and knowing that the Senate in the past has responded to shenanigans with rules — for example, one can’t filibuster a “must pass” budget bill” — I’m wondering why the Pubs simply don’t pass another rule, which they can do with some appropriate shenanigans of their own. For example, make the debt ceiling extension and the balance of the year appropriations all “must pass”, and therefore just jam them through.

    Sure the Dems will be outraged, but that’s nothing new.

The basic rule, dating at least back to Reagan, is that the Republicans take the blame for the shutdown. Just the way it is. This will be no different. However, in the past the Republicans have caved, every time. The result is that they got the blame, shame, and nothing to show for it.

Suppose, just once, they hang tough and they get something for their troubles. It would change the whole dynamic, permanently. I would not bet on DJT folding, though he will be under tremendous pressure from Ryan and McConnell to do so.

Let the Twitter Storm begin.

    notamemberofanyorganizedpolicital in reply to Tregonsee. | January 16, 2018 at 2:06 pm

    Twitter Storm?

    Maybe that’s a Shi…..LOL Storm according to the “Chit Owe” Democrat Party – Party of Dick.

    redc1c4 in reply to Tregonsee. | January 16, 2018 at 2:20 pm

    *if* there is a shutdown, one of two things is likely to happen with teh narrative:

    PDJT will set it, leaving the Demonrats & the #MFM, but i repeat myself, to play catch up, which they suck at

    PJDT will disrupt & destroy their preferred narrative, as he always does, and then they will be forced to play catch up, which they suck at.

    i’m good with either one. 😎

    Bucky Barkingham in reply to Tregonsee. | January 16, 2018 at 3:19 pm

    Prior to Trump that was the nature of things. Yes the LibDem propaganda arm will still blame the GOP for the shut down but Trump has his Twitter feed to counter them. If Twitter tries to silence him look for an Administration anti-trust investigation. IMHO Trump has the upper (winning) hand here.

Let the media continue its slide into irrelevance. We don’t accept its fantasy narratives, we don’t believe anything it says.

The MSM writes fiction, poorly. If I want to read fiction it will be about steamy sex and stompy robots.

Not surprising. The so-called “mainstream media” is wholly owned by the SJW Left. Credibility: less than zero.

notamemberofanyorganizedpolicital | January 16, 2018 at 1:57 pm

The “Chit Owe” MSM can DROP DEAD!

Literally they are going to start dropping because the majority of Americans are cutting them off.

Look at this: “Box Office Attendance Projected to Hit 25-Year Low”

“….This news follows hot on the heels of the revelation that the cinematic summer of 2017 brought in $3.57 billion. That may sound like a lot, but it’s actually 15.7% less than the summer of 2016, marking the largest summer-to-summer decline in modern times…“lowest since 1992” …”

notamemberofanyorganizedpolicital | January 16, 2018 at 2:48 pm

Where your future “Lie-stream MSM News Readers” come from….

“HIDDEN CAMERA: HUNDREDS of Twitter Employees Paid to View “Everything You Post Online” Including Private “Sex Messages”Everything you send is stored on my server… You can’t [delete it], it’s already on my server.”
Claims Twitter Stores Your Private Data to Sell to Advertisers, “They’ll make a virtual profile about you”
“You’re paying for the right to use our website with your data basically.”
“You leak way more information than you think… Like, if you go to Twitter for the first time, we have information about you.”
How Would You Protect People If This Power Fell Into the Wrong Hands? “You don’t,” Says Former Twitter Engineer Conrado Miranda, “There is no way.”

Careful with that feather, Mary, you almost knocked me over!

Voted for Gary Johnson = Hillary Clinton. Good grief! You almost screwed all of us because you couldn’t see just how corrupt Hillary Clinton was? Seriously?

    hrh40 in reply to RobM. | January 17, 2018 at 7:50 am


    Gary Johnson needs to take a mental fitness test after his admittedly long-term heavy marijuana use.

Trump is endlessly criticized for his every action despite his constant string of successes. His successes are rarely ever mentioned.
When Obama was in office, the media was relentless in their pursuit of compliments despite his endless string of failures. Meanwhile, every effort was made to minimize or even hide all the scandals in his “scandal free” reign.
This overall situation speaks volumes about the media. The real question is why so many continue to rely upon the media for any kind of information or news.

I can only imagine how badly Hillary would have lost if the press had not been 90% in her court. Imagine also how much more Trump would have succeeded if that same 90% of mainstream press, as well as the nevertrumpers hadn’t fought him all of 2017.

Why would the MSM change their methodology? It’s working perfectly so far. Trump’s reported polling is in the crapper.