President Trump vs. the Media: Here’s what Americans think

President Trump’s relationship with the media has been quite a tumultuous one, with both sides criticizing the other for their lack of honesty and integrity among others. While this blame game has played out repeatedly and quite openly over the years, this report focusses on what the American public has come to think of these clashes. Both the government, as well as, the media can leverage this data in their decision making.  

Over the years, Americans have become quite used to seeing their President lash out at reporters and walk out of press briefings. Just as they are used to seeing reporters question his many decisions and policies. But the ongoing coronavirus crisis seems to have only amplified these attacks. So much so that the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) in its report last month said that President Trump’s attacks on media dangerously undermine the truth.

Caught amidst these verbal clashes and jibes, what has the American public come to think and believe? Is the media justified in its criticisms, or should there be a limit to their freedom? Piplsay polled 30,268 Americans to find the answers. Here’s a summary of what we found:

Other Insights

  • 49% of men think President Trump is right to criticize the media, even if to some extent, as compared to 36% of women
  • 47% of Gen Xers and 44% of Millennials think President Trump’s media attacks threaten free speech
  • 62% of Baby boomers think President Trump’s media coverage has been mostly negative as compared to 43% of Millennials
  •  30% of Blacks, 31% of Hispanics, and 25% of Whites think the media is completely justified in its critical reporting of President Trump
“The media is trying to expose the president for what he is – an arrogant and incompetent leader. Of course, he will try his best to discredit them. The media is there to report the truth” – Mike
“President Trump may not be right all the time, but there is no denying the fact that the media also exaggerates at times. But these public spats are only making us look ridiculous “ – Simon

Survey Methodology: This Piplsay survey (powered by Market Cube) was conducted nationwide in the US from May 16-17, 2020. We received 30,268  online responses from individuals aged 18 years and older.

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