According to a new Axios/SurveyMonkey poll, an overwhelming majority of Americans (72%) believe the media knowingly and intentionally report “fake, false or purposely misleading” news stories.
The survey data reveals that the sentiment is consistent across party lines: A majority of Republicans (92%), Independents (79%), and even Democrats (53%) are in agreement that “traditional major news sources report news they know to be fake, false or purposely misleading” “a lot” if not at least “sometimes.”
Republicans (92%) are the least likely to trust the media, which coincides with the views held by the head of the party President Trump who often condemns the mainstream media as biased and deceiving in its coverage of him and his administration.
Democrats are more likely to give the media the benefit of the doubt, with 46 percent who say they “never” if not “rarely” report fake news.
Most damning among the findings is that most Americans (65%) believe the media deliberately report false or misleading news because “people have an agenda.”
Meanwhile, 30 percent believe such stories are published due to laziness or “poor fact-checking” and just 3 percent think “fake news makes headlines by accident.”
The Axios/SurveyMonkey online survey of 3,936 American adults was conducted June 15-19 and has a margin sampling error of 2.5 percentage points.