Study: Media Coverage of Trump’s First 100 Days Set ‘New Standard For Negativity’

trump journalists
AP/Andrew Harnik

A Harvard study has documented the mainstream media’s blatant anti-Trump bias and found that while the President dominated news coverage in his first 100 days, that coverage was almost entirely negative — with 93 percent of CNN and NBC’s Trump coverage critical of the new president.

The study, by the Harvard Kennedy School’s Shorenstein Center, released Thursday concludes that Trump’s coverage “set a new standard for negativity.”

Looking at the coverage of President Trump’s first 100 days from 10 major American and European outlets, the study found that Trump was the topic of 41 percent of all news stories — three times that of previous presidents. It also found that Trump was the featured speaker of 65 percent of the coverage.

But, despite Trump featuring heavily, the tone of that coverage was 80 percent negative, according to the study. For comparison, it found that President Barack Obama received only 41 percent negative coverage in his first 100 days. President George W. Bush received 57 percent negative coverage, and President Bill Clinton received 60 percent negative coverage.

“In no week did the [Trump] coverage drop below 70 percent negative and it reached 90 percent negative at its peak,” the study says, noting the peak of the negative coverage came during the attempt by the House of Representatives to pass a health care bill.

Some outlets’ coverage was particularly blatant. While the Washington Post and the New York Times covered Trump negatively 83 and 87 percent of the time, an overwhelming 93 percent of NBC’s and CNN’s news reports were negative.

The only outlet that came close to fairness was Fox News, where 52 percent of its reports were negative. The only other outlet nearing Fox’s balance was the Wall Street Journal, of which 70 percent of its news reports were negative.

“Trump has received unsparing coverage for most weeks of his presidency, without a single major topic where Trump’s coverage, on balance, was more positive than negative, setting a new standard for unfavorable press coverage of a president,” the authors of the study wrote.

Even by topic, the study found that there wasn’t a single topic where Trump’s coverage was more positive than negative, with 96 percent of stories on immigration, 87 percent of health care stories and 81 percent of stories on Trump’s fitness for office all carrying a negative tone. Only on the economy did the media coverage approach balance, with 46 percent of those reports carrying a positive tone.

The study also warns that such negative coverage may not only be harmful to Trump, but also for the way the public view the media.

“The nation’s watchdog has lost much of its bite and won’t regain it until the public perceives it as an impartial broker, applying the same reporting standards to both parties,” the study concludes.

Adam Shaw is a political reporter for Breitbart News. Follow Adam on Twitter: @AdamShawNY


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