More people see the news media--as opposed to Russian hackers or political bosses--as the "primary threat that might try to change the election result," according to a recent Suffolk University/USA Today poll.
Pollsters asked 1,000 likely voters: “What do you think is the primary threat that might try to change the election results?”
45.53% said “the news media”--followed by “the national political establishment” (20.79%); “undecided” (13.42%); “foreign interests such as Russian hackers” (10%); and “local political bosses” (8.95%).
When asked whether they thought the news media was “acting completely of its own accord or coordinating stories with individual campaigns,” less than half of respondents (47.8%) said that the media was reporting on the campaigns independently, while about a third (38.8%) said they believed that the media was coordinating with the campaigns it covered.
Another 12.6% of survey respondents were “undecided” whether there was coordination between the news media and individual campaigns.
Slightly more than half (56.5%) said they believe election results will be “fair and accurate,” while 38% say they are “worried that [election] results could be manipulated.”
In addition, all three major news networks failed to get to 10% on the trustworthy scale.
When asked ‘What news or TV commentary do you trust the most?’ less than a third (27%) of survey respondents cited Fox News. But that was almost twice the percentage that cited CNN (15.4%) as their most trustworthy source of news and information.
Other news outlets fared even worse:
- Undecided (18.6%);
- CBS (7.7%);
- ABC (6.9%);
- MSNBC (6.6%);
- NBC (6.5%);
- PBS (6.1%);
- C-SPAN (2.9%);
- Comedy Central (2.3%).
Survey participants were also asked: “Who do you think the media, including major newspapers and TV stations, would like to see elected president, Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump?”
Three-quarters (75.1%) replied “Hillary Clinton”, compared to 7.9% who answered “Donald Trump” and 4.9% who answered “neither”.
The national poll, which was conducted between October 20 and 24, was based on live telephone interviews – in English and Spanish - of adults 18 years or older in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.