The results of a recent Gallup survey reveal that the nation’s trust in mainstream media has fallen into an abyss. The nadir in trust results from the media’s apparent inability or unwillingness to report news fairly and accurately.
Only 36 percent of poll respondents indicated having a “fair amount” or “great deal” of trust in various forms of media, including TV, print, and radio news reports. Of that 36 percent, only 7 percent indicated having a “great deal” of trust.
This number constitutes the second-lowest number in the history of the Gallup question’s history, finishing just above the 32 percent mark that occurred in 2016, shorty after Donald Trump handily beat Hillary Clinton to win the presidential election.
Moreover, Americans have generally expressed limited faith in the press as far back as 2003, per the Gallup survey. The downward slide has escalated since 2018, or during the second year of the Trump administration.
Interestingly, the results reveal that independent voters are trusting the media increasingly less, with only 31 percent demonstrating a “fair amount” or “great deal” of trust in the media, representing an 11 percent drop from 2018 and a 5 percent drop since 2020.
Severe political polarization continues to erode Americans’ trust in the media, with Democrats largely reporting a higher degree of trust than Republicans. Upwards of 68 percent of Democrats have expressed some form of trust in the media, which contrasts strongly with a minute 11 percent of Republicans.
However, this gap is still smaller than it was in 2020, when approximately 10 percent of Republicans and 73 percent of Democrats reported trust in the press, which was the lowest number that Gallup ever recorded.
During the start of Trump’s administration, the GOP witnessed a large drop in the nation’s trust of the media, which fell from 32 percent to only 14 percent between 2015 and 2016. Since this time period, the media has not yet won back trust, and major outlets have also increasingly encouraged ultra-leftist views on air.
According to Gallup, Republicans’ confidence in the fairness and accuracy of media reports has not surpassed 52 percent in the past twenty-five years. In contrast, the Democrats’ confidence has not dwindled below 51 percent in the past twenty-five years.
With regards to independents, “trust in the media has not been at the majority level since 2003,” Gallup concluded.