As the media tried to recover from his explosive press conference Thursday, President Donald Trump took his appeal straight to the people.
A “Mainstream Media Accountability Poll” was released following the news conference, similar to the one then-candidate Trump released during the election campaign to expose media bias against him.
“Do you believe that the mainstream media has reported unfairly on our movement?” the poll begins?
The survey, made up of 25 questions and posted on the GOP and president‘s websites, asks respondents if they trust MSNBC, CNN and Fox News to “report fairly on Trump’s presidency.”
— Jeff Elder (@JeffElder) February 17, 2017
The survey also asks for the participant’s email address and for a donation.
“Thank you for standing up to the media’s lies and attacks,” it says. “Unlike the Democrats, we don’t have a 24/7 media machine helping us win a presidential election. That’s why we need your sustained support.”
Of course, some on the left are calling the poll propaganda while liberals on Twitter are calling for them to take the survey to “balance” out the responses.
— Jordan Uhl (@JordanUhl) February 17, 2017
— Nate Cohn (@Nate_Cohn) February 16, 2017
@Nate_Cohn Everyone can take this survey. Do it – it’s fun! And don’t forget to write in the failing New York Times or Washington Pist.
— Trudy Miller (@trudymiller) February 16, 2017
The poll is a “survey in name only,” UCLA political science professor Jeffrey Lewis told The Washington Post. “It’s a way to fundraise,” he said.
According to the Post:
The committee that emailed it out is a joint fundraising venture made up of the Republican National Committee and Trump’s presidential campaign PAC, and, Lewis said, it isn’t at all uncommon for these groups to use events in the news, like Trump’s harsh comments about the news media, to mobilize and inspire its base.
“Relative to some of the other things we’ve seen, this doesn’t strike me as particularly odd behavior,” Lewis told The Post. “This is a political group doing outreach to its base.”
Pretty remarkable email blast from Trump team: “You – the American people – are our last line of defense against the media’s hit jobs” pic.twitter.com/ZhCv6Ldv5S
— Vera Bergengruen (@VeraMBergen) February 16, 2017
The reaction to the poll by those on the left was predictable as they were shocked and offended by the very idea of the survey.
Donald Trump has a poll on the media’s coverage of him. It is incredibly bizarre https://t.co/8nIeYCC33D
— The Independent (@Independent) February 17, 2017
— दिनेश कुलकर्णी (@TurgidsonBuck) February 17, 2017
The President of the United States has an online poll on the press’s coverage of him. It is deranged. Take it. https://t.co/5RQNFx5hew
— Jamil Smith (@JamilSmith) February 16, 2017
— Joanna Zeiger (@joannazeiger) February 17, 2017
— Alexandra Petri (@petridishes) February 17, 2017
— Ryan Thibodaux (@NotMrTibbs) February 16, 2017
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