Donald Trump has received a massive amount of free media coverage. It amounts to nearly $2 billion. Yet, what about the series of threats made against those in the anti-Trump camp? Guy wrote about Trumpite Roger Stone, who threatened to tell supporters where RNC delegates are staying during the convention in July. As you would expect, these stories of intimidation, even death threats, hardly make the cut for the Big Three–ABC, CBS, and NBC–who instead focused on the billionaire complaining about how the system is rigged, though he’s the frontrunner and has the most delegates. The Media Research Center’s Rich Noyes crunched the numbers between news broadcasts, including Sunday Morning talk shows, between April 5 to the 14:
On April 13, ABC’s World News Tonight correspondent Tom Llamas devoted most of that night’s report to chilling death threats against the Colorado state Republican party chairman, angered at how Donald Trump failed to win any delegates at the weekend party convention.
Besides that one report, and two minor mentions (one on ABC’s Good Morning America and on Thursday’s CBS Evening News), that’s all the broadcast news attention given to reports of actual death threats in this increasingly nasty presidential race: 110 seconds in total, not a moment of which was on NBC.
But since the Colorado convention through Thursday night (April 10 through April 14), the broadcast networks have aired a collective 45 minutes, 30 seconds of coverage of Trump’s complaints that the GOP nominating system is “crooked” and “rigged.” That’s 24 TIMES more airtime spent on Trump’s grievance about the process, vs. death threats against anti-Trump Republicans.
While the networks devoted only minor coverage to the absolutely awful death threats against anti-Trump Republicans (Colorado GOP chairman Steve House told ABC he received an anonymous phone call telling him: “I need you to do me a favor. Get your gun, put it in your mouth, pull the trigger....If you can’t do that, I’m going to send someone over to the house and help you.”), they gave virtually the same amount of coverage to Trump’s convention chairman, Paul Manafort, accusing the Cruz campaign of being Nazis, saying on NBC’s Meet the Press: “You go to these county conventions, and you see the tactics, Gestapo tactics.”
While NBC’s Chuck Todd immediately challenged Manafort in a 32-second exchange, nothing further was said on NBC about Manafort’s inflammatory rhetoric. ABC included the quote in their reporting on Sunday’s World News Tonight and Monday’s Good Morning America, but included no criticism; CBS did the same in two segments on Monday’s CBS This Morning.
Total coverage of the Trump campaign’s charge of “Gestapo tactics” against Team Cruz: a mere 100 seconds.
I would say that constitutes bias; at least I’m open about mine.