- The Washington Times - Thursday, October 20, 2016

Donald Trump claims the news media are against him, and Americans appear to agree. A new Quinnipiac University poll finds that 55 percent of likely voters say the press is biased against Mr. Trump, and that sentiment essentially dominates the survey. These findings suggest most voters are aware of media shenanigans — whether journalists offer blatantly negative coverage, package their opinion and agenda as news, or conveniently overlook positive facts about Mr. Trump.

The poll found that 88 percent of Republicans cite media bias against the GOP nominee — along with 61 percent of independents, 61 percent of men, 60 percent of those ages 18-to-34 years, 51 percent of those 31-to-49, 56 percent of the 50-to-64 crowd and 52 percent of those over 65. Wait, there’s more: 66 percent of those with no college degree cite media bias, along with 51 percent of those who have a degree. Among those who don’t agree: 45 percent of “non-whites,” 49 percent of women and predictably, 20 percent of Democrats.

A CANDID MOMENT

“With my father, what you see is what you get. What you hear is what you get. He is incredibly candid. And he will never lie to the American people.”

Ivanka Trump, speaking of her father Donald Trump at a voter rally in Wisconsin on Thursday.

A VERY SWELL AFFAIR


SEE ALSO: Budget watchdogs pan Trump, Clinton fiscal plans


Behold, it’s the annual OSS Society dinner, staged at a glittering hotel in the nation’s capital on Saturday night. Honoring the Office of Strategic Services — the World War II forerunner of both the CIA and U.S. special forces — this singular gala draws an astonishing array of top military brass, plus powerful members of the intelligence community. The event counts former President George H.W. Bush, former CIA Director Leon Panetta and former Defense Secretary Robert Gates among its honorary chairmen.

The convivial gathering is famous for martinis and old-school class, along with the unmistakable presence of the precious few surviving OSS officers, now in their 90s. The Airman of Note, the Air Force’s premiere jazz band, will entertain; the he-man menu includes a delicate lobster bisque and some prime beef of course; some menu items are based on recipes from classic chef Julia Child — a member of the OSS herself back in the day.

Oddly enough, a legislative mystery is afoot, however. These OSS officers were nominated to receive the Congressional Gold Medal for their intrepid work; the U.S. Senate unanimously passed the bill to do just that, while 320 House members offered a resounding “yea.” Alas, the legislation has hit a snag.

“It must be passed by the House Financial Services Committee before it can be passed by the full House and signed into law. If it is not passed before the 114th Congress adjourns, the bill will die and some of the greatest heroes of the Greatest Generation will never be honored for their service,” says a source.

“Their bravery deserves to be recognized,” observes OSS Society President Charles Pinck.

THE LAST DEBATE: A RECORD-BREAKER

Now that presidential debates have turned into hybrid entertainment, maybe Americans might like to see another one. Audience behaviors certainly point to that. The third and final presidential debate pulled in 67.4 million viewers, and it is a record-breaker. The final Nielsen numbers surged past the 1992 match between George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton and Ross Perot, which garnered 66.9 million — the most-watched third debate of all time. Until now.

Among all networks, Fox News was the grand winner with an audience of 11.3 million, compared to CNN with 8.7 million and MSNBC with 5.5 million. Even the “big three” broadcasters could not top Fox News — ABC delivered 10.9 million, CBS 10.1 million and NBC 10.3 million.

WEEKEND CANDIDATE TRACKER

Donald Trump is one to praise those who have stamina. He has stamina. Since the final presidential debate on Wednesday, Mr. Trump has been in Nevada, Delaware and New York. His weekend begins with three jumbo rallies in North Carolina and Pennsylvania, followed by appearances in Virginia and Ohio. Running mate Gov. Mike Pence hosts rallies in New Mexico and New Hampshire.

Hillary Clinton and her cadre of surrogates are also out and about. The Democratic nominee will appear in the ever-popular Cleveland, followed by two rallies with running mate Sen. Tim Kaine in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia. Come Monday, Mrs. Clinton joins Sen. Elizabeth Warren in New Hampshire.

Also on the campaign trail on Mrs. Clinton’s behalf this weekend: Vice President Joseph R. Biden appears in Pennsylvania, former President Bill Clinton visits four cities in Florida during a bus tour of the Sunshine State and President Obama hosts a rally in Las Vegas on Sunday. And in the fundraising department, senior adviser John Podesta hosts an event in London — yes, in England.

WEEKEND REAL ESTATE

For sale: the Amos Birdsall Estate, built in 1900 in Melrose Park, Pennsylvania. Five bedrooms, four baths; 6,152 square feet includes original oak woodworking and floors, leaded glass, three fireplaces, formal living, dining and breakfast rooms; office, family room, home gym, vaulted loft. Completely updated gourmet kitchen and butler’s pantry; luxury bath appointments, cedar closets, sleeping porch. Stone exterior, porte-cochere, two-car carriage house, pool, flagstone patio. Priced at $750,000 through BirdsallManor.com

POLL DU JOUR

55 percent of likely U.S. voters say the media is biased against Donald Trump; 88 percent of Republicans, 61 percent of independents and 20 percent of Democrats agree.

51 percent overall think that Mr. Trump made sexual advances toward women in the past; 22 percent of Republicans, 45 percent of independents and 84 percent of Democrats agree.

34 percent overall say these allegations are a “big deal but not a deal breaker” for Mr. Trump; 32 percent of Republicans, 39 percent of independents and 34 percent of Democrats agree.

33 percent overall say they are “not a big deal”; 59 percent of Republicans, 33 percent of independents and 10 percent of Democrats agree.

28 percent overall say they are “a deal breaker”; 8 percent of Republicans, 22 percent of independents and 52 percent of Democrats agree.

Source: A Quinnipiac University poll of 1,007 likely U.S. voters conducted Oct. 17 to 18.

Guffaws, polite applause to [email protected]

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