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New Poll Shows Huge Increase in Distrust of Mainstream Media – Are Trump’s Constant Attacks to Blame?

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A poll released Monday by Monmouth University found that nearly seventy-seven percent of Americans distrust traditional major American media outlets and believe that the blame is based on editorial decisions as well as inaccurate reporting.

Patrick Murray, director of the independent Monmouth University Polling Institute, noted, “These findings are troubling, no matter how you define ‘fake news.’ Confidence in an independent fourth estate is a cornerstone of a healthy democracy. Ours appears to be headed for the intensive care unit.”

The polling results found that “more than 3-in-4 Americans believe that traditional major TV and newspaper media outlets report ‘fake news,’ including 31% who believe this happens regularly and 46% who say it happens occasionally. The 77% who believe fake news reporting happens at least occasionally has increased significantly from 63% of the public who felt that way last year.”

People surveyed for the poll felt that social media platforms are partly to blame for the spread of fake news and are not doing enough to stop it. But the poll also finds that President Donald Trump continues to be less trusted than the major cable news outlets as an information source.

Researchers also discovered that only 25% of Americans denote that the label “fake news” applies only to stories where the facts are wrong. A majority (65%) however claim that the label “fake news” also applies to how media outlets make editorial decisions about what their choices in stories to report on.

This was coupled with findings that “the belief that major media outlets disseminate fake news at least occasionally has increased among every partisan group over the past year, including Republicans (89% up from 79% in 2017), independents (82% up from 66%), and Democrats (61% up from 43%).

The poll also revealed that nearly 83% of Americans believe outside groups or agents are actively trying to plant fake stories in the mainstream media. Two-thirds (66%) say this is a serious problem – including 74% of Republicans, 68% of independents, and 59% of Democrats.

“According to the public, fake news is the result of both outside agents trying to plant fabricated stories and the editorial processes of mainstream media outlets that disseminate false narratives. The perception of this problem couldn’t be more pervasive,” said Murray.

Image by Jeso Carneiro via Flickr and a CC license

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‘Shaping Policies’: Trump Official in Charge of Personnel at HHS Has Been a College Senior – Report

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The Trump administration put a college senior in charge of personnel at the Dept. of Health and Human Services, Catherine Granito. She appears to have graduated this spring.

A Politico report Monday afternoon, “Trump administration shakes up HHS personnel office after tumultuous hires,” revealed the stunning placement – including that she has been “playing a role in shaping policies in the middle of a pandemic.”

HHS has an annual budget of $1.286 trillion. As of 2015 it had 79,540 employees.

“White House Liaison Emily Newman and her deputy Catherine Granito will be shifting full-time to the Voice of America’s parent organization, the United States Agency for Global Media, HHS chief of staff Brian Harrison told senior staff on Monday,” the Politico article states.

It adds that “Granito — an undergraduate at the University of Michigan as recently as this spring — had been in charge of the health department’s personnel while playing a role in shaping policies in the middle of a pandemic.”

Granito’s LinkedIn page says she attended the University of Michigan until May as a student athlete playing lacrosse and notes she majored in English language and literature. A Google search shows that page listed her as an “advisor” at HHS.

Her Facebook page says she “Works at U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.”

The recent Michael Caputo scandal appears to have involved Granito.

“Granito, who was in the class of 2020 at the University of Michigan, was involved in political appointees’ recent scrutiny of CDC Deputy Director Anne Schuchat, a career civil servant. Caputo and his team raised concerns about Schuchat this spring after she publicly acknowledged missed opportunities in the nation’s response to the coronavirus.”

 

Image: Official White House Photo of HHS Sec. Alex Azar and President Donald Trump by Tia Dufour via Flickr

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Kayleigh McEnany Says Trump ‘Very Likely’ Will Nominate New Supreme Court Justice Before Ruth Bader Ginsburg is Buried

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White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany says President Donald Trump will announce his nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court, mostly likely by Tuesday. The late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg will lie in repose at the Supreme Court. The date of her funeral, which will be a private ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery, has not even been announced yet.

Asked if the nomination would be announced “before Wednesday,” she replied, “I think that’s very likely.”

MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell Monday morning also hinted the announcement would come Tuesday.

 

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Trump Says He Will Make SCOTUS Nomination Next Week – Appears He Will Use Seat to Strengthen Where He Is Weak in Polls

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President Donald Trump says he will announce his nominee to replace Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg “next week.”

He made clear his primary deciding factors will be to help him in the polls.

Trump told reporters Saturday afternoon “most likely” he will choose a woman.

CNN reports he is leaning towards choosing a woman mostly because he is doing poorly in the polls with women.

Trump spoke about two women judges. He talked about Barbara Lagoa, noting she is Hispanic and from Florida. He is struggling in the polls with Hispanics and in Florida.

Reporters also asked about Amy Coney Barrett, a far right wing anti-choice, anti-LGBTQ extremist. Trump spoke positively about her as well. Reports say she is the current frontrunner.

This is a breaking news and developing story. Details may change. This story will be updated, and NCRM will likely publish follow-up stories on this news. Stay tuned and refresh for updates.

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