From the very first days of Donald Trump’s presidency, his compulsion to lie about all things great and small was a dominating feature of his character, or lack thereof. Trump lied about the crowd size at his inauguration, about millions of fraudulent Democratic voters, about his taxes and alleged wealth, and even about his faith. The odds were (and are) pretty good that if Trump is talking, he is lying.
Now a new poll provides evidence of the consequences of Trump’s pathological prevaricating. After three years of spewing flagrant falsehoods on every subject (more than 16,000 lies documented), it turns out that that isn’t a very good way to establish trust. Who knew? According to the Monmouth University Poll:
“Trump is trusted less as source of information than three cable news outlets – except if you ask Republicans. Nearly half the American public (48%) trusts CNN more than Trump, compared with one-third (35%) who trust Trump more than CNN and another 13% who trust both equally as a source of information.
“The results are similar when Trump is pitted against the left-leaning MSNBC – 45% trust MSNBC more, 32% trust Trump more, and 16% trust both equally. The right-leaning Fox News also bests the president as a trusted information source – 30% trust Fox more and 20% trust Trump more, although a plurality of 37% trust both equally.”
So Americans trust CNN and MSNBC more than they trust Trump, each by a thirteen point margin. If Trump finds out about this, he could have a stroke. The public at large even trust Fox News more than Trump. Although Republicans are “more likely to trust Trump (35%) over Fox News (21%), with 40% trusting both GOP-aligned sources equally.” Which only proves that the Cult of Trump is strong, especially among Fox viewers.
This preference for the press as a credible source of information has been documented in many other polls over the past few years. And a recent poll by NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist reveals that a majority of Americans don’t trust what Trump has been telling them specifically about COVID-19 (coronavirus). That’s not surprising considering the fact that Trump has been callously exploiting the White House Coronavirus Task Force press briefings as a replacement for the campaign rallies that he can’t hold anymore. He has hijacked those briefings for crass political gain and because he needs them to satisfy his ego. Although, it’s obvious to most viewers that he has nothing of substance to contribute, so he wastes time with falsehoods and lavish tributes to himself. Is it any wonder that he isn’t trusted?
As for Fox News, they posted an article on their website about this poll that completely misrepresented the results. The headline bleated that “Monmouth poll gives media lower job approval than Trump amid coronavirus crisis.” That’s technically correct if you ignore the whole of the results. The poll asked if various entities had “done a good job or bad job dealing with the coronavirus outbreak.” If you look only at those who said Trump did a good job, he prevailed by 50-45 percent. But those who said he did a bad job (45%), were more than those who said the media did a bad job (43%). So that can hardly be called a victory for Trump.
What’s more, the poll showed that 72% of the American people said that state governors have done a good job. And 65% said that federal health agencies have done a good job. So the people do have confidence in specific leaders and agencies, just not Trump. That, along with Trump’s abysmal showing on trust when compared to the media, is an encouraging sign that the American people are paying attention and will hold those who failed them accountable in November. And that really can’t come too soon.
How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.