This post originally appeared on AddictingInfo.org
Bernie Sanders’ campaign released a statement lambasting the corporate media after a report came out that shows the disparity in coverage that Sanders’ campaign has received compared to the amount coverage that Donald Trump’s campaign has received.
The Tyndall Report, which tracks various nightly news programs, found that ABC Nightly News gives Donald Trump 81 minutes of media coverage for every one minute that Sanders has received. This disparity in coverage comes despite the fact that Sanders has roughly the same support as Trump, according to polls. Speaking of polls, they also show that Sanders would overwhelmingly crush Trump and the rest of the GOP in a head to head match up.
“The network newscasts are wildly overplaying Trump, who regularly attracts between 20-30 percent of primary voter support, while at the same time wildly underplaying Sanders, who regularly attracts between 20-30 percent of primary voter support,” said Jeff Weaver, Sanders’ campaign manager.
Here are some highlights from the report:
Coverage of Donald Trump now accounts for more than half of Campaign 2016 coverage on all three newscasts combined (60 minutes out of 114 — 52%)
— NBC continues to cover Trump much more heavily than its two rivals, both in absolute time (35 mins vs CBS 16, ABC 8) and in proportion of Campaign 2016 coverage (62% vs CBS 53%, ABC 31%)
— NBC is the overall leader in Campaign 2016 coverage of all types (56 mins vs CBS 31, ABC 27) yet its emphasis on Trump has not been at the expense of other aspects of the campaign. The three newscasts are closer to parity in total time for non-Trump-related campaign stories (NBC 21 mins vs CBS 15, ABC 19)
It appears that the biggest offender in this coverage disparity is NBC. The same network that has had Trump host Saturday Night Live (purely a ratings move) and was the home of Trump’s reality television show The Apprentice.
“The corporately-owned media may not like Bernie’s anti-establishment views but for the sake of American democracy they must allow for a fair debate in this presidential campaign,” said Jeff Weaver, Sanders’ campaign manager. “Bernie must receive the same level of coverage on the nightly news as other leading candidates.”
Sanders isn’t the only one who should be feeling burned by the embarrassment that is the corporate news. Trump has received more news coverage than the entire Democratic field of candidates combined. In fact, Vice President Joe Biden’s non-existent campaign received more news coverage than Sanders’ campaign, despite Sanders actually being a candidate and receiving higher ratings in the polls than Biden was getting when he was still being included in polls.
It doesn’t require one to become a conspiracy theorist to address the question, “Why the Bernie blackout on corporate network news?” The corporate news has forsaken journalistic ethics in their attempts to make a profit. Trump has spent most of his campaign acting as a clown. Even if he is a dangerous clown, his buffoonery makes a great headline. Clowns are more entertaining than watching a serious candidate talk about the real problems facing the United States and the world. Trump provides an excellent opportunity to create a news-like, information product that’s sold for a profit.
That doesn’t mean Trump’s policy proposals shouldn’t be covered and dissected by media entities. But then again, when was the last time a serious dissection of Trump was presented on network corporate media?