If the 2016 presidential race is tightening, how come the Main Stream Media is acting as though it’s widening? Indeed, why is the MSM indicating to us that Hillary Clinton is going to defeat Donald Trump in a landslide? Why are Republicans being told that they should abandon all hope of winning the White House?
To answer those questions, we can cite the MSM Rule of Inverse Electoral Correlation: The closer the presidential race gets, the louder the MSM declares that it’s over. And all this comes even as Clinton has had a terrible week—arguably her worst week ever, as the billowing smoke of financial scandal clouds herself and her family.
Let’s consider: A couple of weeks ago, Clinton was enjoying double-digit leads. And yet the latest Morning Consult poll has Clinton up just three, 39 to 36—hardly a commanding lead. And the USC Dornsife poll actually has Trump up two points. Such numbers, we can observe, don’t quite comport with a Democratic runaway. Or, as Robin, the Boy Wonder, might have said to his caped mentor: “Holy shifting narratives, Batman!”
Yet of course, the MSM has plenty ammo still to fire. Having been instructed by The New York Times to abandon even the pretense of impartiality by taking an “oppositional” stance toward Trump, Big Journalism is now doubling down on behalf of the Democrats; hence this August 19 headline bannered atop Politico: “GOP insiders: Trump’s overhaul won’t succeed/ Roughly a third of Republican respondents say the addition of [Stephen K.] Bannon and promotion of [Kellyanne] Conway will make things worse.” (We might note that this bit of MSM-masticated “news” led immigration-focused pundit Mickey Kaus to react with a snarkily ironic tweet: “AUSPICIOUS SIGN FOR TRUMP.”)
And yet the very next day, Politico dutifully followed up with another Trump-is-doomed piece, headlined: “Republicans prep ‘break glass’ emergency plan as Trump tumbles/ Losing hope for the White House, the GOP is exploring a plan to cast congressional candidates as a check on President Hillary Clinton.” The MSM’s intentions are obvious: Journos are seeking to stampede Republicans into panicky defeatism.
Hence this Los Angeles Times headline: “New poll analysis finds a wasted summer for Donald Trump and a boost for Hillary Clinton.”
Indeed, even the folks at Morning Consult, the pollsters who found Hillary up by just a thin three points, nevertheless chose to ignore their own findings—in journalism, the term is “bury the lede”—by using this reality-distorting headline: “Trump’s Campaign Shakeup Is Likely Too Little, Too Late.” Yes, that’s right: a mere three-point deficit in August means certain defeat for Trump in November.
Yet despite this MSM relentlessness, some observers within the Establishment have noticed the change in the electoral environment; after all, when two-thirds of the voters agree that the country is on the wrong track, it’s dangerous to be an incumbent—or, in Hillary’s case, a quasi-incumbent. And so on August 21, Lee Drutman, a clear-eyed fellow at the left-leaning New America Foundation, was moved to tweet, “Hmmmm.. the 4 most recent polls form a mini-trend here. This race may be tightening again.”
Still, the tireless MSM tide rolls on. Here’s the best headline yet, courtesy of The Washington Post: “With a comfortable lead, Clinton begins laying plans for her White House agenda.” As Robin might also say, “Holy chutzpah, Batman!”
In the very first paragraph of that count-your-chickens-before-they’re-hatched story, we see this glib reference to Clinton’s hoped-for plans as the 45th president: Such plans include, we learn, “enacting immigration reform if current polling holds and she is easily elected to the White House in November.”
We can recall that “immigration reform” has cracked up twice in the past decade—once under George W. Bush and again under Barack Obama—when the issue was much less salient than it is today. Indeed, just in the last year or so, the grim specter of jihadi terrorism has forced Americans to look askance at “refugees” from anywhere. So we can wonder: Will the fearful public assessment of the threat from open borders really be any different in 2017?
Yet of course, we aren’t in 2017 yet—we’re still in 2016. And in addition to Trump growing stronger on the stump, perhaps the biggest change in the last week has been the growing realization that the Clinton Foundation is an indictment waiting to happen.
Indeed, we can also observe: What a difference four years makes. During the previous presidential campaign, on September 25, 2012, Mitt Romney actually traveled to New York to pay homage to the Clintons, piling on the praise.
First, the Republican nominee brown-nosed the Democratic former president personally: “A few words from Bill Clinton can do any man a lot of good.”
And then Romney went on to laud the 42nd president’s “good works”:
President Clinton has devoted himself to lifting the downtrodden around the world. One of the best things that can happen to any cause, to any people, is to have Bill Clinton as its advocate. That is how needy and neglected causes have become global initiatives.
Such slobbering admiration must have been confusing to potential Republican voters in that election year. If Romney thought so highly of Bill Clinton, and if Clinton had so strongly endorsed Barack Obama, then why should anyone vote for Romney? Heck, by that logic, maybe Romney himself should have voted for Obama. (Moreover, as we consider the situation today, we might also ask: If Romney thinks so highly of the Clintons and their works, should we really trust his judgment when he excoriates Trump?)
Perhaps Romney, obsessed as he has been with trashing Trump, is not aware of it, but in the years since 2012, the public’s perception of the Clinton family outfit has changed dramatically.
Undoubtedly, the biggest single reason for this change is the publication of Peter Schweizer’s landmark book, Clinton Cash: The Untold Story of How and Why Foreign Governments and Businesses Helped Make Bill and Hillary Rich. Indeed, that 2015 volume, published with the help of the Government Accountability Institute (full disclosure: at the time, Stephen K. Bannon served as Executive Chairman of both Breitbart News and GAI; Schweizer as President of GAI and Senior Editor-at-Large for Breitbart), is still a multi-media best-seller.
And so whereas four years ago, the namby-pamby Romney campaign had nothing but praise for Clinton, Inc., today, the much harder-edged Trump campaign has nothing but scorn.
Indeed, on Sunday morning, Rudy Giuliani, the prosecutor-turned-mayor-turned-Trump-adviser, joined in the 2016 GOP nominee’s blunt assessment of “Crooked Hillary,” adding, “She is the consummate corrupt Washington insider.” The Hill summed up Giuliani’s sharp view: “The Clinton Foundation should be indicted as a racketeering enterprise.” RICO suit, anyone?
Moreover, later on the same Sunday came death-knell news for the Clinton “philanthropy”: The left-leaning, Bill-and-Hillary-worshiping Huffington Post called for the foundation to be shut down. Ouch!
Yet revealingly, The Washington Post (also known as the “Bezos Post”) story, the one doping out Hillary’s first term, never so much as mentioned the words “Clinton Foundation.”
So sure, by any objective measure, Hillary has had a horrendous week. But given the shameless partisanship of the MSM, that only means that we can expect another spate of glowing “Hillary Ahead!” headlines tomorrow. And tomorrow. And tomorrow.