op-ed

Media Coverage of Trumponomics Is Biased As Usual

Ted Harvey Chairman, Committee to Defend the President

President Trump’s recently released 2019 budget proposal fulfills many of his campaign promises.

The White House’s “American Budget” includes $716 billion to rebuild our military and strengthen our nuclear arsenal, in addition to $200 billion in infrastructure spending and $23 billion for border security. In the wake of pro-growth tax cuts, the Trump budget will continue putting Americans to work, in a stronger and safer nation. The president is keeping his word to Make America Safe Again from foreign threats—namely terrorism and illegal immigration.

But the left-leaning mainstream media is having none of it. The supposedly objective Associated Press tweeted: “President Trump sends Congress $4.4 trillion spending plan that features soaring deficits.”

If only they were so critical of President Obama, who grew America’s national debt by an unprecedented $9 trillion—a nearly 90 percent increase. In 2016, the same Associated Press tweeted: “Obama sends record $4.1 trillion spending plan to Congress to combat terror threats, global warming.” A 2015 tweet was even more biased: “Obama sends $4 trillion spending plan to Congress, pledging help for middle class.”

Did budget deficits not exist from 2008 to 2016? A CNN headline similarly claimed “Trump’s budget would add trillions to the deficit,” while The Washington Post’s bias was even clearer. The Post’s Wonkblog whined “Trump’s budget hits poor Americans the hardest.”

Yet the liberal media’s coverage of the Trump budget pales in comparison to its coverage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which reformed the U.S. tax code for the first time since the 1980s. Since the bill’s passage in December, Republican tax cuts have encouraged more than 350 U.S. employers to increase paychecks, hike 401(k) contributions, and give out generous bonuses. Apple announced $30 billion in additional capital expenditures, creating 20,000 new jobs. Wal-Mart increased base wages to $11 an hour, while expanding maternity benefits and parental leave. Chipotle, meanwhile, is giving out tax reform bonuses from $250 to $1,000.

All in all, more than 3.5 million Americans are now enjoying greater take-home pay because of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. You can forgive Democrats for being unamused by the Trump bonuses, since not a single one voted for competitive tax rates and larger worker paychecks. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA)—who boasts a $30 million net worth—infamously trashed $1,000 tax cut bonuses as “crumbs,” even though she praised an Obama-era payroll tax cut for giving Americans an extra $40 per paycheck. (Pelosi was silent when that temporary tax cut was reversed and Americans started paying more.)

Somehow, the “fake news” media is even more intellectually dishonest. The esteemed New York Times ran the following headline: “Bonuses Aside, Tax Law’s Trickle-Down Impact Not Yet Clear.” CNN Money was quick to claim “only 13 percent of business’ tax cuts are going to workers.” Newsweek highlighted the “mad myths about Trump’s tax changes” and Reuters made the case tax cuts are “bringing glee and skepticism.” Why working Americans are “skeptical” about wage hikes and $1,000 bonuses remains unclear.

Of course, President Obama’s temporary 2011 payroll tax cut extension—which only gave workers an extra $40 per paycheck—won numerous accolades from media cheerleaders. CNN essentially promoted the tax cut, churning out headlines like “White House asks what $40 dollars means to you.” The Hill suggested the Obama extension “will help with higher gas prices,” touting the “policies [President Obama] put forward that will help improve the economy and benefit middle-class Americans.” Again, the media was utterly silent when Republicans fought to make the tax cut permanent, only to be defeated by Democrats who took money from working Americans.

Ask yourself: What would the liberal media have done if President Obama signed a tax bill that directly benefitted millions of Americans within weeks?

Alas, President Trump will never have such a luxury. But he will continue growing our economy, rebuilding our military, and securing our borders—whether the media likes it or not.

Ted Harvey is chairman of the Committee to Defend the President.


The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of The Daily Caller.