New polling indicates that Americans are split over whether media coverage of President Donald Trump has been too harsh. The data signals a U.S. population that is divided over whether to side with a president or the journalists who cover his administration.
On July 12, a Gallup survey found that 35 percent of national adults believed that the media's coverage of Trump was too tough while 34 percent said the reporting was not tough enough. And 28 percent of respondents said that the tenor of the president's coverage was "about right."
The polling group's latest findings indicated a growing split among Americans when compared to their January survey, when 36 percent of national adults said the media was being too harsh toward Trump, only 28 percent said journalists were not being tough enough, and 31 percent judged the coverage to be about right.
The latest poll found that there is a stark partisan split over the news media. A reported 74 percent of Republicans said that the media was being too tough on Trump while only six percent believed he needed harsher coverage. Only 9 percent of Democrats thought the media's coverage of Trump was unfair while 49 percent called for tougher coverage of the administration.
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Meanwhile, 73 percent of Independents thought the media was being too tough on the president while 26 percent said it wasn't being tough enough.
Trump has frequently taken to social media to blast news outlets that give critical coverage of him. The president has often deemed news stories that are unflattering for his administration "fake news."
On July 12, Trump took to Twitter to urge his supporters to disregard any news stories that relied on confidential sourcing.
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"Remember, when you hear the words 'sources say' from the Fake Media, often times those sources are made up and do not exist," Trump tweeted out.
The poll found that a slight majority of Americans were more inclined to trust the media whenever there was a public dispute between Trump and journalists.
Thirty-two percent of national adults said they leaned toward Trump during public disputes while 36 percent said they leaned toward the media. And 29 percent of respondents said that they were not inclined to pick a side.
The polling group's findings closely mirrored a survey they conducted in March indicating that Americans have largely already decided whether they side with Trump or the media and that their positions would be difficult to budge.
Trump has fixed the majority of his media ire on CNN. On July 4, a SurveyMonkey survey found that 43 percent of national adults trusted Trump more than CNN while 50 percent trusted the news outlet over the president, Axios reports.
Breaking down the data, 89 percent of Republicans said they trusted Trump more, while 91 percent of Democrats and 55 percent of Independents sided with CNN.
SurveyMonkey chief research officer Jon Cohen concluded that the public disputes "between the White House and major media outlets has made the question of truthfulness just as partisan-tinged as health care or other policies."