Strong pro-Trump tilt in Russian coverage of US presidential election
It is undeniable that the upcoming elections made us scratch our heads about who to vote for. All the heated debates and the scandals surrounding both opponents have proved that it will be something we will bear in our minds months, or even years, after the new POTUS is announced.
Unfortunately, we tend to forget the fact that the whole world is keeping an eye on the US elections, not only “We the People.”
Russia, the country perceived as the biggest rival of the US by many sources, has been following the presidential election closer than we can ever imagine. All of the major Russian news outlets, such as RT News, RIA, MK, and Mail.Ru, are posting articles about the US elections daily, with at least 2 posts from each.
Furthermore, Vzglyad, a Russian online newspaper focusing on business, has a subsection in the home page about the US 2016 Elections, situated in-between section about President Putin and Crisis in Syria.
Their site welcomes readers with an article reading “A victory for Trump is beneficial for both the interests of USA and Russia.”
By quickly scrolling down on the page, you are faced with tons of more articles criticizing Clinton’s latest activities. On the other hand, although Trump is not heavily praised in the rest of the articles, I was not able to come across anything that was particularly attacking him.
I notice a survey on the US elections (the website is strictly black and white, making it harder for the modern day reader to use), talking about a recent announcement made by Clinton, where she praised American exceptionalism and asks the readers’ opinion on whether “America is exceptional” and whether Russia deserves a similar ideology.
Any citizen, who has taken a basic statistics class in high school would be able to see the wording bias presented in the survey.
Even Trump was the Republican nominee, the election became surrounded by info revealing a close relationship with Trump and Putin. To explain it briefly, Trump has opined that “in terms of leadership, he’s [Putin] getting an A, our president is not doing so well,” On the reverse, Putin has called Trump “yarkiy”, translating directly into ‘bright’, meaning that he has a bright future.
Add this to the fact that a majority of the top Russian news sources are either state-owned, partially state-owned, or owned by businessmen known to have close ties with the Russian government. It was also Russian hackers who were included in the list of suspects of the group that caused the Clinton email controversy.
RT News, probably the biggest news outlet in Russia, has created its own US election map giving us the Democratic, Republican and swing states. By looking at closely, we can see a total of 8 swing states. That is 3 states lower than the amount of swing states on US-made election maps.
Last but not least, we find an article on RT News about the latest predicted votes for the two Presidential candidates. The article was titled “Trump leads with 46% while Clinton trails at 45% after FBI reboots email scandal investigation.”
The author did not forget to put the date in which the poll was published, but “forgot” to include details about who did the poll and where.
Although RT News is correct on the matter that amid the latest scandals, Trump has seen a rise in his votes, he is still behind Clinton, according to major US sources. For example, RealClearPolitics’ national poll of polls, which takes this latest survey into account, gives Clinton a 4.3-point lead.
All in all, in Russia, coverage of the presidential election shows a heavy tilt favoring one of the candidates, and it’s not for Hillary Clinton.