A new report from Axios details how Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden might be the “luckiest, least scrutinized frontrunner” ever in a presidential election based on the media’s highly favorable, hands-off approach to the candidate.
In making its case, the news outlet noted that “Biden has yet to be pinned down on an array of legitimate questions” regarding his mysterious intentions on packing the Supreme Court as well as his views on Medicare for All, reallocating police department funding, the Green New Deal, and reparations for black Americans. The former senator also has not been grilled over his questionable support of the 1994 crime bill.
The key statistic
A poignant example of the media’s favorability toward Biden highlighted in the report is a Trump campaign statistic not disputed by the Biden campaign that found that since Aug. 31, “Biden has answered less than half as many questions from the press as Trump — 365 compared with 753.”
Axios noted that in that time, Biden has been interviewed by local TV reporters 35 times and national reporters three times and conducted two town halls.
Earlier this year, Biden went more than a month without holding a press conference and has generally, during the campaign, flown under the radar and avoided appearances with reporters.
The imbalance of press questions since Aug. 31 is actually an improvement on a reported imbalance between July 19 and Sept. 15. The New York Post reported that during that time, Trump fielded 1,141 questions to Biden’s 274 questions — a whopping five times more.
Attempting to provide an explanation for the most recent statistic, Axios suggested the mainstream media’s “obsession” with President Trump along with the president’s “compulsion” to dominate the news cycle as reasons for the imbalance.
But a more obvious explanation may simply be that the mainstream media have a biased opposition to Trump’s re-election and therefore have no interest in grilling his challenger and risking damage to his election chances.
Such media bias was on full display during an early September press conference in which reporters tossed softball question after softball question to Biden. Several conservative commentators lashed out in response to the event, calling it “shameful” and “pathetic.”
“It’s like watching someone make sure a 3-year-old wins CandyLand,” RealClearPolitics senior writer Mark Hemingway tweeted, relaying a friend’s text message.
Trump campaign spokesman Andrew Clark told Axios: “Biden has been the least-scrutinized presidential candidate in modern history at great disservice to the voters, but the press still has time to rectify that.”