On Tuesday night in Phoenix, President Trump delivered a prosecutor’s summation of the case he has made against the media over the last two years.
They lied, he said. They sneered. They badgered. They edited, omitted and ignored anything that smacked of good news. They abandoned journalistic principles with their embrace of anonymous sources.
If the president didn’t keep updating us himself, he said, we would not know about the record highs on Wall Street, the booming jobs market, the sharp reduction in welfare fraud and the successes at curbing illegal immigration.
What we should understand clearly at this point is the media wants President Trump forced from office, and it wants to be able to say it played a part. One need only look at events from the last two weeks to see this.
Its complaints about his response to the Charlottesville unrest are either dishonest, disingenuous or deliberately distorted. President Trump said everything they insisted he “had” to say, contrary to their assertions.
He did not operate on their timetable, he said, because, unlike them, he tried to gather facts before he made statements. He spoke out against hate and violence on both sides because there was hate and violence on both sides – and no, this did not mean he failed to speak out at all.
Thousands of Americans in the arena – far outnumbering the protesters outside – and millions of Americans watching on TV saw the president make his case. The media wanted to hide, and he knew it. “I bet they’re turning off their cameras because of what I am saying,” he said at one point. No way. They couldn’t. He had seen to that.
His speeches are smoother now, more to the point, and his stagecraft, already excellent, has improved.
Beyond that, Americans agree with his portrayal of Charlottesville. According to a poll, 62 percent of Americans blamed both the white supremacists and Antifa for the conflict. This comes as a surprise only to those whose sole source of news is mainstream media.
Trump may have been delivering a prosecutor’s summation, but the verdict is in. America’s media is guilty of conspiring with the left and with each other to try to overturn the verdict of voters and remove President Trump from the White House. And voters are doling out the punishment in the form of declining ratings, readership and credibility.
We will get an early indication of Trump’s coattails this November with statewide elections in Virginia and New Jersey. We will get a more complete picture next November with the congressional midterm elections. As things stand now, it is hard to see Democrats gaining strength in either house of Congress or the White House.
On Tuesday, Trump was more effective than many can recognize or accept. It is great that he can do it, but it is a travesty that Washington is so dysfunctional that he must keep at it.