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Joe Biden has had a disastrous first year in office, the degree of mistakes and bad performances is such that despite having a press almost completely on his side, his approval rating has plummeted. The media have played a fundamental role in the election of the president as if protecting him, as if he were a helpless child, from facing reality.
But in the face of so many political mishaps and the reaction of an evidently disgruntled population, some media outlets already seem to be trying to ask questions a little less complacent and touch on issues they would otherwise ignore completely. Today, we talked with Gabriella Hoffman about the media’s relationship with Biden, the reaction of a public that often feels cheated, and the importance of a media that asks the necessary questions rather than becoming an extension of the president’s press office.
Hoffman is a media strategist, consultant, and award-winning writer. She has published her columns in outlets such as the Daily Caller, Washington Times and Washington Examiner.
Biden’s disapproval rating has fallen to a new all-time low. What do you think is the reason for that and how do you analyze the president’s first year?
President Biden campaigned as a unifier but is governing as the exact opposite. His unbecoming conduct was to be expected given his past behavior as U.S. Senator and Vice President. Unfortunately, many of us in conservative media predicted he wouldn’t repair divisions here. If you look at his time in elected office he’s had a lot of blunders and said racist things. Most notably, he attacked Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas during his confirmation hearing in 1991. He claimed in 2012 that then-GOP nominee Mitt Romney and Republicans would put black voters “back in chains.” There are countless other examples I could reference. Ha!
Today, Biden is embracing the Far Left’s extreme agenda and won’t revert to his “moderate” ways. He’s bullied Republicans and moderate Democratic lawmakers like Senators Manchin and Sinema who oppose his agenda or want to maintain Congressional norms. He’s also ineffective at handling multiple crises – whether it is the southern border, COVID, inflation, Russia, or high gas prices. Honestly, it’s hard to keep track of all the mishaps and failures. What an unmitigated disaster he’s been thus far. And we’re only a year into his presidency.
His approval took a nosedive after the disastrous Afghanistan pullout. Since then, his unpopularity has soared to record highs. In my near decade of political reporting and writing, I’ve never seen a president lose favor with Americans – Republicans and Democrats alike – so quickly. I suspect there is a lot of buyers’ remorse from voters now.
Do you think the media has covered President Biden’s performance honestly?
Media coverage of the 46th president is heavily biased in his favor. However, some media members thankfully are reporting on his terrible poll numbers and botched handling of crises. Others are starting to direct more tough questions to President Biden, VP Harris, Press Secretary Jen Psaki, Cabinet Members, and others. A turning point? We shall see.
With this in mind, I think the fawning coverage of Biden is starting to wane. Early on in his presidency, many asked soft-ball questions pertaining to his ice cream flavor preferences. Frankly, it was unbearable to watch. But as his approval began to dip in August, some began to criticize and question his handling of affairs here and abroad. Perhaps they recognize their duty is to not act as an extension of his PR department.
There will be individual reporters and commentators who’ll continue to carry water for Biden. Annoying, but to be expected, since the press generally leans left. These individuals should be tuned out.
I’m curious to see if media coverage changes ahead of the 2022 midterms. The bar is set quite low, so I’m not optimistic. I’d love to be proven wrong though.
Why do you think the media is functional to Biden at all costs?
The majority of American press members vote for Democrats and are ideologically progressive. That’s why you see a majority of reporters and commentators run to his defense and ruthlessly attack Republicans who criticize or block his policies.
The press shouldn’t have a cozy relationship with the White House, no matter the occupant. You can be cordial and respectful, but shouldn’t obsessively “fangirl” over politicians in general.
They should be asking President Biden tough questions, not coddling him.
What do you think are the worst lies that the big media has told this year?
Oh, there are plenty of examples I could cite.
Let’s start with the media coverage of the 2021 Virginia statewide election. They accused Governor Glenn Youngkin (R-VA) of espousing white supremacy, along with his running mates, Lieutenant Governor Winsome Sears and Attorney General Jason Miyares, who are black and Hispanic, respectively.
They also lied about Kyle Rittenhouse’s actions during the 2020 Kenosha riots until his acquittal last year. And they recently pushed a hoax claiming former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo didn’t lose weight naturally. After the tragic Surfside building collapse, a reporter blamed Florida Governor Ron DeSantis for approving policies that caused it. Unbelievable.
I suspect 2022 could be worse in terms of invented and disproven hoaxes and controversies—especially those originating from Twitter.
Do you think that people are becoming more aware of the lies of the media?
Absolutely. It’s true more Americans of all political persuasions are starting to turn away from mainstream media sources—even those on the Left.
Fewer Americans engaged with news media in 2021 That should worry cable TV networks and print newspapers as people gravitate to digital media or alternative news sites. And the good reporters and writers – yes, a decent amount still exists – are rightly concerned about growing the distrust of their profession. It’s important to recognize that.
If El American readers are interested in fair reporting, especially from a conservative perspective, I encourage them to check out the excellent reporting by Town Hall reporters and bookmark my column there. Feel free to connect with me online at Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube and online.
Vanessa Vallejo. Co-editor-in-chief of El American. Economist. Podcaster. Political and economic analysis of America. Colombian exile in the United States // Vanessa Vallejo. Co-editora en jefe de El American. Economista. Podcaster. Análisis político y económico de América. Colombiana exiliada en EE. UU.