Media coverage of President Trump this summer was overwhelmingly negative, the Media Research Center found in a new study. More than that, however, broadcast network evening newscasts focused on the Trump administration much more than they did former President Obama’s administration.
Since Inauguration Day (January 20), Media Research Center analysts have reviewed every mention of President Trump and top administration officials on ABC’s World News Tonight, the CBS Evening News and NBC Nightly News, including weekends. As of August 31, coverage of the administration has totaled nearly 74 hours (4,418 minutes) of airtime, or about 39 percent of all evening news coverage.
For comparison purposes, coverage of the Obama administration in all of 2015 and 2016 totaled 59 hours (3,544 minutes), or roughly 10 percent of the available broadcast airtime. In other words, Trump has already received more coverage in his first 224 days in office than Obama received in his final two years as President. (MRC)
And in June, July, and August, that obsessive coverage of the Trump administration was 91 percent negative. This is even worse than the first three months of the administration when coverage was 89 percent negative. The study found that of all the Trump administration coverage, 53 percent focused on four topics: Russia, the failed Obamacare repeal attempt, the North Korea situation, and his response to the violence in Charlottesville, Virginia.
According to MSNBC analyst Mark Halperin, Trump will only start getting better coverage if he works with Democrats more often. Trump “will get good coverage, if he works with Democrats, for as far as the eye can see. It will produce more liberal policies, which a lot of people in the media like,” he said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” last week.
This comment “gave the game away,” MRC notes. “All Presidents deserve critical news coverage from time to time, but the relentlessly hostile coverage Trump has seen thus far is as much a reflection of the media’s ideological bias as anything else,” the report states.