A pair of fawning “news” articles this week has been a reminder of just how far the tone has shifted in the media from former President Donald Trump to President Joe Biden.
On Monday, Newsweek “reported” that Biden was playing Mario Kart with his granddaughter and that he won. The headline even added that Biden played as the character Luigi. The article is similar to the “they’re just like us” sections about celebrities in tabloids, opening with the question: “How did Joe Biden relax during his first Presidents Day weekend as president?”
A quick search shows such adoring coverage was not provided to Trump on Presidents Day while he was in office. Instead, outlets like the San Francisco Chronicle ran opinion articles that called what Trump did over the holiday weekend “odd,” adding that he was “dishonoring the office” by Tweeting about the special counsel investigation against him at the time – a politicized investigation that found Trump did not collude with Russia to steal the 2016 election, as media outlets insisted. CNN in 2018 published an article about “9 totally unpresidential things Donald Trump tweeted over Presidents Day weekend,” again denouncing his tweets. The Arkansas Daily went so far as to claim Trump “summarily hijacks Washington’s Birthday.”
Nothing supportive about how he “relaxed.” One can imagine that if Trump had beaten his granddaughter at a game of Mario Kart, one of the usual-suspect feminist writers would publish a screed about how Trump was an example of the patriarchy and tying him to GamerGate and all the misinformation about that movement parroted by the media.
On Tuesday morning, CNN published its own bootlicking article about Biden flying on Air Force One and reading the newspaper. The article then becomes a boring but slavish praise of Biden’s presidential routine, including how he likes to light the Oval Office fireplace and go to bed early.
Compare these two articles, plus the numerous tweets and articles about Biden’s wife and dogs, to how the press covered Trump’s mundane presidential habits. For Trump, everything was negative, CNN even went so far as to omit relevant information from Trump’s trip to Japan in order to paint him in a bad light. Recall the koi pond incident, in which CNN headlined its article “Trump feeds fish, winds up pouring entire box of food into koi pond,” and broadcast video of the alleged infraction that left out Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe doing the exact same thing first.
CNN also chastised Trump for drinking Diet Coke and taking two scoops of ice cream. Those articles were free of any positive words, instead including descriptions such as “vicious.” The headline for the ice cream article was “Trump gets 2 scoops of ice cream, everyone else gets 1,” yet included no additional information about this, such as whether Trump refused to allow anyone else to have two scoops or whether this is just a meaningless preference. It’s pretty obvious the story would have been covered differently if it were about Biden.