This week saw Joe Biden’s cratering poll numbers fall even lower. Four polls were released on Wednesday and they are very disappointing. Reuters: 36 percent. Politico: 38 percent. Rasmussen: 39 percent. Economist/YouGuv: 40 percent. It’s not surprising that the news was ignored by the networks.
But it’s not particularly surprising. An MRC/NewsBusters study last fall found that ABC, CBS and NBC covered Donald Trump’s low polling almost twice as much as the flailing Biden. As I explained on October 26, 2021, “While ABC, CBS and NBC mentioned Donald Trump’s unpopularity 37 times, they only noted the rapidly dropping numbers for Biden 19 times.”
Here’s our video montage from last year:
That was the moment I began to write:
Biden’s fall is, by far, the bigger news story of the two. According to Real Clear Politics, Trump was an unpopular president at the beginning of 2017. His average approval rating was around 44%. For four years, his numbers have largely remained the same. Biden started as a popular president with a popularity rating of 55 percent in January 2021. His average dropped to 42 percent by October’s end.
ABC received the highest number of mentions about Trump’s popularity in the August to Oct 2017 period. CBS was second with 13, and NBC third with 8. The interest shown by all three networks in a Democratic unpopular presidential candidate was much lower four years later. CBS was the only network to mention imploding Biden figures with eight. NBC was second, with six mentions. ABC came last, with five.
And since then, it’s gotten even worse. On Friday, Biden’s Real Clear Politics average of approval polls was 37.2. On July 22, 2018, four years ago, Trump’s approval was 43.1. This means that Biden is six percentage points less popular than Trump.
Back during the Trump years, the networks were gleeful at Trump’s bad polling. The August 2, 2017, CBS Evening News, Chip Reid trumpeted, “According to a new poll from Quinnipiac University, 62 percent of Americans say the President is not honest. Seventy-one percent say he is not levelheaded.”
Biden’s question is, “How low can he get?” The New York TimesBiden currently polls at 33%. One thing is for sure, the networks won’t be excited about Biden’s collapse as they were about Trump unpopularity.
More examples are available from the NewsBusters Time Machine weekly flashback series. Go here.