Only a day before journalists are set to meet at their annual self-congratulatory dinner, a new poll finds that their intended customers, the American people, don’t trust them. Indeed, the poll finds Americans trust the Trump White House to tell the truth more than they do the media.
The poll taken of 2,006 adults between April 23 and 26 is certainly bad news for the political media as 37 percent of respondents said they trust the Trump White House, while only 29 percent said they trust the media.
Worse for the media, the day before their April 29 dinner, the poll found that 51 percent of respondents said the national political media “is out of touch with everyday Americans,” while only 28 percent said the media “understand the issues every day Americans are facing.”
The poll sponsored by Morning Consult unsurprisingly found a partisan outcome with its questions. But what should concern the media is that independents also said they trust the White House more than they trust the media.
Republicans had an extremely lopsided view of the press with 72 percent saying the White House was more apt to tell the truth. Only 10 percent said the media would deliver real news while 18 percent said they did not know.
Of course, Democratic respondents trusted the media more than they do Trump, but at a much closer margin. 54 percent favor the media with only 12 percent saying they trust the White House. Perhaps a bit surprising was the 34 percent who said they were not sure which was more truthful.
But independents broke towards the Republican position with 37 percent saying they trust the White House more than the media (29 percent). Like Democrats, 34 percent said they were not sure.
In an age when the media has taken special care to try and discredit President Trump at every turn, the media’s antagonism has driven independents away, not toward, trusting news coverage. The survey found that 43 percent said the media had been harder on Trump than any other president, and almost half (49 percent) said the media is out of touch with average Americans.
President Trump spent much of the last year lambasting the media for misreporting the facts, and his recent rally cry that the media engages in “fake news” has also struck a chord with Americans. The poll found that 42 percent said they have seen “fake news” stories in newspapers and TV broadcasts more than once a day. Another 31 percent said they see fake news several times a week in those same traditional media outlets.
This result was echoed a few days earlier in another poll, this one of Trump voters. The poll, sponsored by the University of Virginia Center for Politics, found that 88 percent agree with Trump’s claim that the media is the enemy of the American people.
So, as the media prepare to meet in Washington D.C. for their annual White House Correspondent’s Dinner, President Trump will be meeting with Americans in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.
Next Saturday night I will be holding a BIG rally in Pennsylvania. Look forward to it!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 22, 2017
The announcement came after the president decided to skip the annual dinner, breaking with the tradition presidents have set in attending the media’s event.
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston, or email the author at firstname.lastname@example.org.