Accuracy in Media

People started lining up Sunday in Orlando for President Donald Trump’s announcement of his 2020 campaign, and crowds of 100,000 or more could be in place – either inside the arena or outside watching on the giant screens being erected as part of #45Fest – by the time the rally starts.

But the mainstream media wants Americans to know that no matter how much enthusiasm they see on their screens, Trump is not doing well.

“Facing negative polls and internal tensions, Trump plans to launch reelection bid with Orlando rally,” reads the headline on the Washington Post piece by Toluse Olorunnipa, Josh Dawsey and Ashley Parker.

“As President Trump prepares to formally launch his reelection bid Tuesday, his allies are trying to tamp down headlines that depict his campaign as trailing top Democrats, beset by withering leaks and unable to keep internal tensions from spilling into public view,” reads the lead.

Slate celebrated the decision by the editors of the Orlando Sentinel to preemptively endorse whoever runs against Trump in “Ahead of Trump Campaign Kickoff, Local Orlando Paper Offers Presidential Endorsement 17 Months Before Election” by Elliot Hannon.

CBS News ran the Associated Press story under “Trump supporters and protesters gather in Orlando ahead of campaign launch.” The story focused more on planned protests by a few thousand than the celebration of Trump by tens of thousands.

“Opponents of Mr. Trump’s reelection announcement on Tuesday are launching their protests at a nearby gay bar where a mariachi band and a drag queen will performer in what they say is a juxtaposition of the president’s policies,” the AP wrote.

The AP wrote that organizers of the opposition rally viewed Trump’s announcement as “an affront to a city with a large Puerto Rican population and a visible gay community.”

The Daily Beast headlined its story: “Trump to Kick Off 2020 Campaign in a City That Loathes Him,” with a subhead that read: “The president’s supporters were lined up outside the Amway Center more than 40 hours before his official campaign kickoff in Orlando, but street demonstrators were also preparing.”

Trump will be greeted by a “large, overflow crowd of adoring fans,” his “allies and campaign staff have pulled out all the necessary stops in their efforts to please the spectacle-minded, pageantry-obsessed president,” and he’ll be “delivering his speech in the affirming glow of his loving followers and loyalists,” wrote Asawin Suebsaeng for the Daily Beast.

But that speech will be given “in the heart of a Florida city that largely despises him.”

Orlando and surrounding Orange County are Democrat-controlled, but as Suebsaeng admitted, the rest of the area is decidedly “redder and Trumpier.”

But when Trump arrives, “he’ll also be met just a few blocks from the Amway Center by street demonstrators and a progressive opposition telling him to go to hell and get out of their city.”

NPR reported that this may be the official launch of Trump’s campaign, but he has been in campaign mode for far longer, in a story headlined: “Trump Set to Officially Launch Reelection, But Hasn’t He Been Running All Along?” by Jessica Taylor.

“The former reality TV star and real estate mogul – the first president without prior political or military experience – used an unorthodox campaign style to notch an upset win in 2016, with massive rallies to excite supporters,” Taylor wrote. “And he’s employed that same strategy, with a heavily blurred line between official duties and trying to sell his agenda muddled with outright politicking, since taking office.”

Peter Baker of the New York Times wrote that Trump’s divisiveness – it is always blamed on him – may prove his undoing. “Mr. Trump has never expanded his support beyond the people who elected him – and never really tried,” Baker wrote in “Four Years Ago Trump Was Seen as a Sideshow. Now He Is he Show.”

“He has remained focused intently on retaining the support of his base to the exclusion of reaching out to those who have opposed him. Whether by inclination or calculation, it is a strategy for a divided era when Americans are less interested in getting along.”

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