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“It’s still the economy, stupid.”
July 8, 2020. New York. – The way the U.S. media has covered Trump and his administration’s handling of the Covid-19 crisis, social unrest over racial inequality, economic worries, and questions about the president’s temperament have combined to place the incumbent candidate in a risky position entering the 2020 election, according to new research from Media Tenor International.
While media sentiment on the economy has shown some recovery from the initial employment crash created by COVID-19 lockdowns, emerging hotspots in the American South and West may result in further job losses as reopening plans may not be viable as the coronavirus continues to spread. Other emerging issues, such as accusations that Trump ignored a security briefing about Russia paying fighters in Afghanistan for American deaths, may further impact the media image going into July.
Meanwhile, Joe Biden, Trump’s presumed Democratic challenger for the presidency, has had comparatively little media coverage. While this is always an issue faced by presidential challengers, this has been more pronounced because of how Joe Biden has chosen to limit political events in response to COVID-19. There has also been some speculation from pundits that Biden is trying to keep a low profile as Trump has faced significant negativity without the other candidate needing to go on the attack.
Despite these bad signs for Trump, past election data shows us that the tone of media coverage in the first six months of an election year is not necessarily decisive, and there is still an opportunity to turn the race around. How media tone develops between now and November will be key in influencing who voters ultimately choose to back.
For over 25 years Media Tenor's mission has been to contribute to objective, diverse, and newsworthy media content by bringing together the diverse parties. Media Tenor's global research projects include analyses of election campaigns, investor relations, public diplomacy, corporate communications and other topics critical to news makers and news audiences.