As the US presidential showdown hits ‘pause’, Trump’s greatest foe is no longer Joe Biden, but raging media bias
Robert Bridge is an American writer and journalist. He is the author of 'Midnight in the American Empire,' How Corporations and Their Political Servants are Destroying the American Dream. @Robert_Bridge
Riddle me this: How does a US presidential candidate win an election without proper support from the mainstream media? Conventional wisdom says it is virtually impossible. Yet only because Donald Trump is no conventional candidate does he actually stand a chance of snatching victory from the jaws of media-scripted ‘defeat’ in the 2020 election.
Despite weeks of speculation that gave Trump virtually zero chance of defeating his seldom-seen Democratic challenger, Joe Biden, the seemingly miraculous has come to pass. Not only did Trump defy all expectations, there is a very good chance he will emerge victorious. That leads to the first question regarding the media and its complicated relationship with the US leader: how were their predictions so far off the mark, again?
Virginia is only 53% in and Biden is losing by 200000 votes but networks called it for Biden two hours ago #Florida is 91% in & Trump leads by 3.5% but they still refuse to call it— Marco Rubio (@marcorubio) November 4, 2020
Consider just one of many botched media-sponsored calls, Florida. Before the election kicked off, surveys taken by Reuters/Ipsos and CNBC/Change, for example, showed Biden leading in the Sunshine State by four points and three points respectively.
Trump, however, ended up crushing Biden in Florida by over three percentage points. Incidentally, the media noticeably held out for a long time before it finally put Florida, as well as other trophy states, into the Republicans’ win column. The same sluggish behavior was not replicated by the media when it came to calling states in favor of Biden, as perplexed Twitter users were quick to point out.
Fox News obviously compromised.It’s obvious this election is being compromised by fraudulent votes. Calling states within mere mins of polls closing (NY)— TPod69🌟🌟🌟 (@TPod69) November 4, 2020
Meanwhile, overrated Nate Silver and his much-cited 538 website gave Biden an 89 percent chance of winning the election, whereas the incumbent Trump, busy packing rallies to the rafters in a cross-country campaign rush, was stuck in the basement at 10 percent. But much like his projections in the 2016 election, where Silver predicted a landslide victory for Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden is heading into the final round against Donald Trump heavily bruised.
Some debates on here about FL (the conventional wisdom is bearish on Biden relative to polls). One thing to keep in mind is Biden's actually underperforming there relative to other states. He's up 2 there when our model thinks he "should" be up 4 based on his numbers elsewhere.— Nate Silver (@NateSilver538) November 2, 2020
My natural inclination is to blame such wildly inaccurate projections on the political propensities – ie liberal – of the media and pollsters, who have an uncanny knack for always getting the responses they want to hear. And let’s face it, judging by the way the media has slow-roasted Trump over the course of his first term, there is not a single mainstream media outlet, aside from maybe Fox – and even that’s highly debatable – which is sympathetic to the Republican populist.
The fairest explanation for the failed polls came from none other than Fox commentator Tucker Carlson, who actually blamed the respondents for intentionally misleading the media and polling agencies out of fear of coming out of the closet as Trump supporters, who, as the liberal media would have us believe, are xenophobic, misogynistic, knuckle-dragging white supremacists.Also on rt.com America is close to being torn asunder by political strife and partisanship. Here are the seven VITAL issues at stake
“The most basic question the polls raise: Is this a free country? If you're afraid to express a political view in public...of course not,” Carlson said.
Whether or not Carlson is right, his line of reasoning fails to explain why the media consistently ignores glaring problems connected to the US election process. In the year 2020, with much of the nation in lockdown over the Covid-19 pandemic, that problem involves the huge increase in the number of mail-in ballots. Here the possibility of fraud should be an obvious concern among journalists, especially considering that it has proven problematic in the past. When Trump warned as much over Twitter, however, the social media platform feigned disbelief and brazenly flagged the US president’s comment as “unsubstantiated.” To add insult to injury, the virtual empire that Jack (Dorsey) built cited two of the most anti-Trump media conglomerations, CNN and the Washington Post, as proof of its claim.
Big problems and discrepancies with Mail In Ballots all over the USA. Must have final total on November 3rd.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 26, 2020
But lo and behold, Trump’s worst fears about mail-in voting have materialized as the battleground state of Pennsylvania has called a ‘lid’ on tallying any more votes until tomorrow. Needless to say, the unorthodox move has raised a lot of eyebrows, especially as the announcement came just as Trump was enjoying a commanding lead in the battleground state, as elsewhere. Here, it would be especially helpful for Trump to have an influential voice in the media to support his claims of possible voter fraud, especially now that the fate of the election may ultimately hinge on that very issue.
There’s zero good excuses for a state to stop counting votes for the night. Counting should continue nonstop until it’s done. Presidential elections are a single night every 4 years, they can prepare a revolving staff.— Sophia Narwitz (@SophNar0747) November 4, 2020
Finally, the most egregious failure of the media industrial complex of late is its refusal to investigate the Hunter Biden laptop scandal, which emerged just weeks before the election. According to numerous sources, not least the FBI, the contents on the device’s hard drive, which include purported evidence that Joe Biden’s son took advantage of his father’s political position to enrich himself at the expense of various governments around the world, are authentic. Yet in one uniform voice, the mainstream media and the Democrats have blamed a ‘Russian disinformation campaign’ for the ‘hacked’ material.
The only reason the election is close is because we don’t have free speech on social media#BigTech wouldn’t allow us to even discuss the laptop from hell, never mind show its contentsIf Trump doesn’t protect free speech online, Republicans will never win the White House again— Rogan O’Handley 🇺🇸 (@DC_Draino) November 4, 2020
If that sounds familiar, that’s because it is practically the same empty excuse the Democrats used when explaining Hillary Clinton’s trove of emails that went public before the 2016 election. That the media would once again submit to the absolutely preposterous claim of ‘Russian interference’ to stop it from investigating an explosive revelation that has potentially disastrous implications for a presidential candidate, then, simply put, they are no longer a fair and unbiased source of information. Rather, they are an “enemy of the people,” as Trump has described them on more than one occasion.
With nothing less than the future trajectory of foreign and domestic policy hanging in the balance, the US must find a way to ensure that the media and Big Tech is no longer a servant of special interests and political groups, but ‘we the people’.
Without a fair and impartial media, America’s grand experiment in democracy will – sooner rather than later – self-destruct, much like Donald Trump’s desperate struggle to win back the White House without any media fairness may ultimately do.
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The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.