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58% of likely US voters say media ‘are enemy of the people;’ Plurality don’t trust political news sources

Newspapers. (congerdesign/Pixabay)
July 20, 2021

A recent poll conducted by Rasmussen Reports found that 58 percent of likely U.S. voters agreed with the statement “The media are ‘truly the enemy of the people.’” A plurality of respondents also said they did not trust political news sources.

According to Rasmussen Reports, 34 percent of respondents strongly agreed with the statement, “The media are ‘truly the enemy of the people’” while 24 percent of respondents somewhat agreed. 36 percent of respondents disagreed with the statement, including 23 percent who strongly disagreed and 13 who somewhat disagreed. Six percent of respondents said they were “not sure” about the statement.

The three-question survey was conducted between July 7 and 8, and sampled 1,000 U.S. respondents who described themselves as “likely voters”. The poll has a sampling error of +/- three percent with a 95 percent confidence level. The poll was conducted for Rasmussen Reports by Pulse Opinion Research.

Self-described conservatives were more likely than self-described liberal to view the media as “truly the enemy of the people.” 56 percent of conservatives said they “strongly agree” and 25 percent said they “somewhat agree.” Seven percent of conservatives said they “strongly disagree” and eight percent said they “somewhat disagree.” Five percent of conservatives said they were not sure.

Among self-described liberals, 11 percent said they “strongly agree” that the media is “truly the enemy of the people.” 19 percent of liberals said they “somewhat agree.” 54 percent of liberals said they “strongly disagree” and 14 percent said they “somewhat disagree.” Three percent of liberals were not sure.

The poll’s other two questions were “Do you trust the political news you are getting?” and “How serious of a problem is ‘fake news; in the media?”

Responding to the question “Do you trust the political news you are getting?” 37 percent of the respondents said they do, while a 43 percent plurality said they did not and 20 percent said they were not sure.

The divide in perceptions of the media continued to show a heavily partisan split. 61 percent of Conservatives said they did not trust the political news they were getting, while 23 percent said they did trust the political news they were getting. 16 percent said they were not sure.

56 percent of liberals said they did trust the political news they were getting and 19 percent did not. 24 percent they were not sure.

Responding to the question, “How serious of a problem is ‘fake news; in the media?” 83 percent of respondents agreed that it was a problem, with 55 percent describing it as “very serious” and 28 percent describing it as “somewhat serious.”

71 percent of conservatives said “fake news” is a “very serious” problem while 20 percent called it “somewhat serious.”

37 percent of liberals said “fake news” is a “very serious problem” while 36 percent called it “somewhat serious.”