WASHINGTON, September 18, 2016 — Nevada Senator Harry Reid is fuming mad. The media have done a terrible job of covering-up Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton’s health issues, and haven’t pretended that GOP nominee Donald Trump is equally enfeebled.
“You folks have magnified the problems she [Clinton] has,” a scolding Reid told a gaggle of Washington reporters. “Take a look at this character that’s running for president. He [Trump] complains about her health? What does he do? He’s 70 years old, he’s not slim and trim, he brags about eating fast food every day.”
But even the most liberal of media outlets had to admit that it was Clinton, not Trump, who collapsed last Sunday into the open arms of her phalanx of MVP catchers.
But Reid is furious beyond reason with the press. “I can’t imagine you folks not being a little inquisitive about what he’s done to cheat people in Atlantic City and everybody else, and look at his tax returns … You’re letting him get away with the fact that there’s an audit.”
If you have an annual income between $25,000 and $49,000, your odds of being audited by the IRS are around one in 200. About 16 percent of returns filed on income above $10 million are audited, according to the 2014 IRS Data Book.
Jordan Wathen at the investment website Motley Fool writes that the IRS “is a rational entity. An hour spent auditing someone who makes millions likely has a substantially better payoff than shaking down a plumber or middle school teacher.”
Since Trump is a billionaire, it’s not surprising he should find himself a perpetual target of IRS budinskies. They are the handmaidens of insatiable big-spending, big-government Democrats like Harry Reid.
Reid’s criticism of our unfair media’s unfair political coverage is terribly, well, unfair. Thomas Patterson of the Harvard Kennedy School’s Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy found that as the GOP primaries neared their conclusion, “negative statements” by the press about Trump’s candidacy “outnumbered positive statements by 61 percent to 39 percent.”
“The media is really on a witch-hunt against me. False reporting, and plenty of it,” Trump Tweeted last June. “But we will prevail!”
And he appears to be doing just that. Friday’s L.A. Times/USC tracking poll saw Trump pull ahead of his ailing Democratic rival by 6.4 percent.
Reid and his fellow Democrats are wrong to blame the media for Clinton’s falling poll numbers. After all, the nation’s lesser newspapers and electronic media have slavishly followed the New York Times’ lead in the tone and volume of anti-Trump hit pieces offered daily to their readers.
As with Hillary Clinton, the public has trust issues with the press. “Americans’ trust and confidence in the mass media ‘to report the news fully, accurately and fairly’ has dropped to its lowest level,” said the Gallup organization on Wednesday.
Gallup added that by “lowest” they meant in “polling history.”
Here’s the breakdown: Democrats trust our media by a slim 51 percent. Independents trust the Fourth Estate by only 33 percent, while Republicans are the least trusting at 14 percent.
Whether consciously or subconsciously, a considerable number of Americans see little daylight separating the media from Democrats or their unlikable, craven, email-scrubbing and influence-peddling presidential candidate.
And Clinton’s sinking ship threatens to suck the mainstream media below its churning waves and into the cold, dark oblivion of the Kraken depths.
And good riddance.