- The Washington Times - Monday, April 19, 2021

President Biden and former President Donald Trump received wildly contrasting news coverage from broadcasters during their first 100 days in office according to a new study from the Media Research Center, a conservative press watchdog.

It is a “tale of two honeymoons,” the analysis said.

“During his first three months in office, the broadcast evening newscasts have showered Biden with 59% positive press. Four years ago, those same programs were hammering Trump with 89% negative press — a stunning contrast,” wrote Rich Noyes and Bill D’Agostino, who led the research.

“Once top Trump bashers, TV news now loves Joe Biden,” they observed.

The analysts reviewed all ABC, CBS and NBC evening news coverage of Mr. Biden and his new administration from Jan. 20-April 9. The total coverage amounted to a sizable 726 minutes — or 18% of all evening news airtime.

“That’s still just a small fraction of the 1,900 minutes those broadcasts spent deploring Trump and his team when we studied the same newscasts during the same time period in 2017,” the two analysts wrote.

“The shift in tone is even more dramatic,” they said. “Four years ago, Trump faced hellishly negative coverage right from the beginning. Our study at the time showed 89% negative coverage of the new president on the three evening newscasts, an unprecedented hostility that would characterize the media’s approach for the next four years.”

The analysis also revealed that the Biden administration’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic was the most popular topic of all among the broadcasters, which devoted 242 minutes of airtime to it. The coverage, the researchers found, was 79% positive. Mr. Biden‘s $1.9 trillion relief bill, meanwhile, drew 120 minutes of coverage — 86% of which was positive.

• Jennifer Harper can be reached at jharper@washingtontimes.com.

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