Mon. Sep 26th, 2022

In an interview with Fox News Digital, NewsBusters Executive Editor Tim Graham discussed how the mainstream media have covered the midterm elections so far and how the press will report on state and congressional races as election day nears.

A veteran analyst with the conservative watchdog Media Research Center, Graham said, “Our concern is always that [the media] always want the Republicans to lose. That’s their – their dominant mode is, ‘Oh, the Republicans are doomed.’” 

He then pointed out that the polls show otherwise: “Which of course is quite the opposite of the way it looks. You know, certainly when you look at the president’s approval rating.”

Referencing the recent passage of some Democratic legislation, like the “Inflation Reduction Act,” Graham predicted many media outlets would use the developments to boost Democrats’ electoral prospects: “But they’re looking for good news anywhere they think they can find it. So anything that passes the Congress is a good thing for Biden, and it doesn’t really matter whether the law is going to accomplish anything – that’s not the point, the point is something passed.” 

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“You know, and they’re going to call something the ‘Inflation Reduction Act’ whether or not it has anything to actually reduce inflation in it. But you’ve seen a lot of that,” Graham observed. 

He noted other bills passed through the Democratic Congress and the positive media reaction from outlets like CNN, MSNBC, the New York Times and others: “There’s a lot of real excitement for, ‘Oh, they – they passed a CHIPS Act. Oh, they passed the veterans and the burn pits act. Oh, they passed this Inflation Reduction Act.’ And it’s like, ‘Oh, it’s a series of wins.’

Graham particularly commented on the liberal media tendency to routinely focus on ways Democrats can turn around their political fortunes: “One of things the media tends to do is always sort of focus on, ‘How are the Democrats doing?’ They always want to coach them up. They always want to focus on whether they’re – whether they’ve got all they’re ducks in a row. Are they – ‘How are they doing, guys?’”

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NewsBusters Managing Editor Curtis Houck provided an Aug. 1 example from “CBS Mornings,” which had “an examination of their latest Battleground Tracker and a predictable question: What do we – as in Democrats – need to do to keep power?” He noted the segment’s “focus on abortion and Donald Trump to keep women – a key constituency – motivated to vote as, thus far, there’s no sign of ‘a red wave.’”

“They’re not going to spend a lot of time, I’m guessing, focusing on Biden’s approval rating. That’s always an indicator of how badly it’s going to go,” Graham predicted, regarding how the media would approach coverage of the fall midterm campaign. He added, “I mean, Obama’s approval ratings weren’t that terrible in 2010, and they still lost the House. So, Biden’s ratings right now are much worse.” 

He argued that reporters’ “whole intention right now is probably to try to boost the approval rating by saying, ‘Oh, look at all the stuff Joe Biden’s getting done.’”

Graham concluded, “So, I mean, this is where we would see them trying to create a more favorable wind for Democrats. They always seem to be the wind beneath the Democrats’ wings.” 

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