- The Washington Times - Wednesday, October 31, 2018

The broadcast news media has not been kind to President Trump since he was elected. Consistent studies from the Media Research Center showed that, on average, 90 percent of the coverage of Mr. Trump has been hostile. Broadcasters now appear intent on creating a negative grand finale as the midterm elections loom, lashing out at the GOP as well.

“The broadcast networks are heavily spinning their campaign coverage against the Republicans. The spin of this coverage was lopsidedly anti-Republican and anti-Trump,” writesRich Noyes, a senior analyst for the conservative press watchdog.

Based on coverage from Sept. 1 through Oct. 26, Mr. Noyes and his team found that 88 percent of that broadcast coverage was “hostile.” They also counted 97 blatantly negative statements about the president and Republicans, compared to 10 for the Democrats.

The greater question is whether voters are paying attention to this practice. The answer: Yes, voters get it — and frown upon it.

“With midterm elections around the corner, most voters think the media is more interested in stirring the pot than reporting on candidate’s platforms,” says a new Rasmussen Reports survey which found that 52 percent of likely U.S. voters says the media is more interested in “creating controversies” then offering helpful and important coverage of issues.

Public trust in media — particularly broadcasters — continues to erode.

A Gallup poll released in midsummer found that only 20 percent of Americans trust TV news “a great deal or quite a lot,” the survey found. A third said they trusted the news broadcasts “some”, while 45 percent said the trust level was “very little.” Another Gallup poll released in mid-October also revealed the inevitable partisan divide. It found that 45 percent of Americans overall trust “mass media,” but that breaks down as 76 percent of Democrats and 21 percent of Republicans.

MILLENNIAL VOTERS: THE ‘MEH’ FACTOR

An NBC News survey headline say it all: “Record turnout? Not for millennials — just a third say they’ll vote. That number has remained steady since August.”

The network’s new poll of adults ages 18 to 34 parses the opinions of young blacks, Asians, Hispanics and whites. Among many other things, the findings revealed that 6-out-of 10 of them do not know who is running in their own congressional district.

“Young voters will play an important role in the midterm elections, and while the survey found that a sizable third of millennials definitely plan to vote and an additional 26 percent say they’ll probably vote, about a quarter are still uncertain about whether they’ll vote. Another 19 percent say they will probably or definitely not vote,” writes NBC analyst Stephanie Perry.

“Other findings from the survey indicate that millennial turnout may not be strong. Young voters are historically less likely to vote in midterm elections than presidential elections, and this year may not be an exception,” she said.

See more intriguing numbers in today’s Poll du Jour at column’s end.

THINGS CHANGE

Immigration was once an inspirational topic for Democrats. The ongoing Honduran “caravan,” however, may have changed all that.

“Four months ago, critics on the left wouldn’t shut up about the border and some, like Mayor Bill de Blasio, made grandstanding trips to Texas detention facilities and held press conferences to denounce Trump in the harshest possible language. Now, despite the president’s tough talk and use of the military, leftist pols hardly make a peep, fearful that defending the caravan could be political suicide,” writes New York Post columnist Michael Goodwin.

“The stark turnaround serves as a reminder of how quickly the political winds can change direction. Recall that Dems shut down the government over the ‘Dreamers’ legislation, but got nothing but blame and now rarely mention the issue. And while immigration looked like a sure loser for the GOP in June, the sheer size of the caravan, and the violence displayed by some marchers in Guatemala and Mexico, is galvanizing Republican and conservative voters and could tip next week’s midterms,” Mr. Goodwin said.

GOOD NEWS (THANKS, MR. PRESIDENT)

“Utility customers in all 50 states are now spending less on their monthly bills thanks to the tax cuts passed by the Republican House and Senate and signed by President Trump,” says a new report from Americans for Tax Reform — which found that 133 utilities around the nation have lowered rates for customers as a direct result of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which lowered corporate taxes from 35 percent to 21 percent.

“This means lower electric bills, lower gas bills, and lower water bills for Americans,” the report noted.

“As a result of the recent federal tax reform changes. We are thrilled to be able to pass along 100 percent of the savings from tax reform to the people we are privileged to serve,” noted a laudatory statement from Michigan-based Consumers Energy, one of many utilities which went public with their accolades.

FOXIFIED

New ratings numbers from Nielsen Media Research show that Fox News Channel is about to mark 17 consecutive years as the No. 1 rated cable news channel.

There’s some snappy news for the Fox Business Network as well: In October, it marked 17 consecutive months as the leader in business news, according to Nielsen, currently with a 23 percent ratings advantage over rival CNBC. Fox Business also aired the top-five programs in business news, with lead dog “Varney & Co.” marking its 27th consecutive month besting “CNBC’s Squawk on the Street” in the influential 9 a.m. time slot.

POLL DU JOUR

3 percent of U.S. voters ages 18-34 overall say Congress represents their interests “very well”; 4 percent of black voters of that age, 4 percent of Asian voters, 3 percent of Hispanic voters and 3 percent of white voters agree.

32 percent overall of that age group say Congress represents their interests “somewhat well”; 27 percent of black voters, 27 percent of Asian voters, 34 percent of Hispanic voters and 33 percent of white voters agree.

44 percent overall of that age say Congress does not represent their personal interests “very well”; 51 percent of black voters, 52 percent of Asian voters, 47 percent of Hispanic voters and 40 percent of white voters agree.

19 percent overall of that age say Congress represents their interests “not at all well”; 14 percent of black voters, 16 percent of Asian voters, 12 percent of Hispanic voters and 23 percent of white voters agree.

Source: An NBC News/GenForward poll of 1,881 U.S. adults ages 18-34 conducted Sept. 21-Oct. 6 and released Wednesday.

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