Mike Huckabee, February 18, 2017
Some media members are still whimpering over the beatdown President Trump gave them in his Thursday press conference. One common complaint is that Trump is undermining the public’s confidence in the news media by accusing them of running “fake news.” Never mind that they actually are running fake news. For instance, Trump said in a calm and collected voice that he wasn’t “ranting and raving,” he was enjoying this press conference, but he predicted that the next day, the press would report that he was ranting and raving. He was only wrong in two details: they described him as “wild,” “deranged” and “unhinged,” and it took them only until about five minutes after the press conference ended. So their outrage over being accused of running fake news was based on fake news.
Trump did get it wrong himself when he said that the media have a lower approval rating than Congress. As of last June, Congress had a 9% positive rating, while the media were around 20%. Still, it’s hardly a bragging point to declare that your approval rating is twice that of Congress (“Why, it’s all the way up in the double digits!”). A 2013 PPP poll found that given a choice between Congress and various other options, over 50% of Americans chose Brussels sprouts, colonoscopies, traffic jams, used car salesmen and head lice. Even cockroaches came in at 45% approval.