Originally published July 15, 2020
This week, in a visit to Walter Reed Medical Center, President Donald Trump was photographed and videoed wearing a mask. The reaction by members of the media is just an example of a media that is no longer hiding its bias. The masks of media objectivity are off, and continuously exposing this is Trump’s best road to re-election.
First up is Jake Tapper, who is normally the most even-keeled anchor on CNN (although when you are compared to Don Lemon and Chris Cuomo, it’s not hard to look competent). After the photo of the mask-wearing Trump was released, Tapper tweeted, “Some day someone will do a study on how many lives might have been saved if this happened in February or March.” Tapper hasn’t been as insane as his colleagues on praising New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s horrific and awful measures taken during the pandemic, but he also has never once suggested that a study should be conducted over how many lives could have been saved had Cuomo protected the nursing homes or shut down the subways. Additionally, Tapper is writing revisionist history on the state of the nation in February and March.
On March 2, a CNN headline scrambled, “Masks can’t stop the coronavirus in the US.” On March 3, former candidate for the Democratic Presidential nomination, Connecticut Representative and all-around Trump-hater Eric Swalwell tweeted, “Stop wearing face masks. #coronavirus.” On March 7, fellow anchor Chris Cuomo tweeted that “…masks are not viewed as particularly effective in avoiding the virus either.” If Tapper didn’t know about those, maybe he would remember February 26, when Dr. Erica S. Shenoy, the associate chief for the Infection Control Unit at Mass General Hospital told him on his own show, “There’s really no need to be wearing the mask.” Yes, a lot has been learned between then and now, but suggesting that lives would have been saved if Trump wore a mask when literally everyone was saying that wearing a mask was unnecessary is ludicrous.
The media no longer cares about the façade of objectivity; they are openly campaigning for Democrats. Whether it’s softball questions to candidates for the Vice Presidential slot for Joe Biden (see Lawrence O’Donnell interviewing Senator Kamala Harris for a prime example) or devoting airtime to discussing the supposed brilliance of Biden’s ads, the media’s masks are off. This is incredibly obvious when discussing COVID cases.
Lately, the major COVID “hotspot” states are Florida, Texas, and Arizona – three states run by Republicans. However, the goalposts have completely shifted regarding what the media will talk about. Originally, lockdown was to “flatten the curve” – the curve being the number of infected over a certain amount of time. Flattening the curve would prevent overloading the hospital system, which happened. Once the curve flattened in early May, some states began to re-open. For over a month, there was no major spike in cases or deaths. Then the nationwide George Floyd protests and riots began in early June, and three to four weeks later we are seeing a spike in cases, but not in deaths. Since the media cannot blame the spike on the protests, because they were cheering the protests on in the first place, they blame the spike on re-opening.
However, higher case numbers but flat or declining death numbers are indicators that young people are getting this and not being hospitalized, and that testing has increased dramatically, even among the asymptomatic. The hospital system is not being overwhelmed, and the reason for high capacity is because in many cities, elective procedures have been allowed again. If any particular hospital is out of ICU beds, there are resources available to them. Instead of pushing a message of cautious optimism, the media relentlessly pushes case numbers as proof that Republican governance writ large is a failure.
Instead of focusing on case numbers, focusing on deaths is a far better indicator of the failures or successes of a state. Since the media likes to focus on Texas, Florida, and Arizona, and regularly praises the leadership of states like New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut, it’s only logical to compare the numbers.
Total number of deaths doesn’t make sense given the disparity in populations; the three Republican-led states have over 57 million people combined, while the three Democratic states have 31 million. The deaths per 100,000 people in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut are 175, 165, and 122, respectively. In terms of comparison, the deaths per 100,000 in Texas, Florida, and Arizona are 11, 20, and 31, respectively. In fact, of the top ten states in terms of highest death count, nine of them are run by Democrats.
So the narrative changed. It became about new case numbers, not deaths. This isn’t even a clever trick; the media is simply lying to make Republican governors, and by extension President Trump, look bad. The reason couldn’t be more obvious: There is an election coming soon. President Trump needs to get his campaign in high gear, but he isn’t running against Joe Biden. He’s running against a 24/7 news media that has dedicated itself to a single purpose: his defeat. He must become disciplined enough to not give them ammunition.
Moshe Hill is a political analyst who has written for The Daily Wire, the Queens Jewish Link, The Jewish Link of New Jersey and JNS.org. He is regularly featured on ‘The Josh M Show’ podcast. Subscribe to www.aHillwithaview.com for more content from Moshe Hill. Like him on Facebook at facebook.com/ahillwithaview and follow him on Twitter @TheMoHill.