Network Coverage Focuses On Comey, Not Clinton
A study conducted by the Media Research Center found that legacy TV networks are attacking FBI Director James Comey over Hillary Clinton at a ratio of 3-to-1:
“Beginning with the evening (October 28) of the announcement through Monday morning (October 31) MRC analysts reviewed all statements (by reporters, analysts, and partisans) that took a position on Comey and Clinton and found arguments against Comey (88) swamped those against Clinton (31) by a ratio of almost 3 to 1.”
MRC is admittedly a conservative watchdog group, but their findings are consistent with what Politico media reporter Hadas Gold noted on Twitter:
Thus far coverage on broadcast nets ABC/CBS re: Comey/FBI is mostly about Comey coming under criticism, esp Repubs criticism
— Hadas Gold (@Hadas_Gold) October 31, 2016
Conservatives routinely lament that the media report on Republican scandals, while they instead report reactions to Democratic scandals. For example, in 2012, how much coverage of Benghazi was really about Mitt Romney’s “overreach” on Benghazi?
When Donald Trump is embroiled in scandal, the media keeps the story going for multiple news cycles by expanding their coverage to include reactions from other Republicans. For example, they might ask Paul Ryan if he’s still standing behind Donald Trump. But when the FBI announces that they have a newfound device that top Clinton aide Huma Abedin failed to mention, the coverage is instead focused on the FBI director.
The good news is that — for reasons that escape me — cable coverage doesn’t seem to have fallen prey to this same trap. Still, this is the kind of subtle, possibly even unconscious, biased coverage that drives conservatives mad — and it has ironically contributed to the hapless nomination of Mr. Politically Incorrect, Donald Trump.