Disconnect from reality costs Democrats Congress seats

By Liu Jianxi Source:Global Times Published: 2017/6/22 23:33:40

US Republican Karen Handel defeated Democrat Jon Ossoff in a special election for a Georgia House seat Tuesday after the GOP's consecutive wins in Kansas, Montana and South Carolina. The Georgia race is widely regarded as a gauge for the 2018 midterm elections.

While US media pinned much hope on Ossoff, the result was the opposite, just as in the 2016 national election. CNN had earlier reported that "Ossoff leads Handel 51 percent to 44 percent among likely voters in an Atlanta Journal-Constitution poll." Surveys by Landmark Communications and other institutes gave Ossoff a 1 to 3-point edge over Handel. Predictions and analyses from the US mainstream media have once again deviated from true public opinion.

The election result suggests the resistance against President Donald Trump is not as strong as has been hyped by the mainstream media and Democrats, and Trump has preserved enough political capital in Georgia and other states.

Why can't the US media faithfully reflect the will of the people? To begin with, public opinion in the US is already divided, and such splits are often multi-layered and even fragmented, rather than contrasting, on a number of issues. Polls are not reliable in gauging respondents' real political leanings, and many swing voters may change their mind at the last minute.

In addition, the US media, much of which is liberal, is becoming more biased. They hold a bearish attitude toward Republicans, especially, the Trump administration, and have utilized the alleged Trump-Russia dossier and any other affairs that would negatively affect the GOP to attack the president. A false impression that Trump is fairly unpopular among US citizens is thus created over time, and such an impression will not only mislead public opinion, but also disturb the media from objectively and comprehensively reflecting the will of the people, and eventually tarnish the media. 

The US media always flaunts its reporting as being objective and fair, but the facts suggest that there are clear-cut political leanings and, based on this, the media deliberately shapes public opinion. We need to be aware of this when we analyze US politics and economics.

The Democrats lost the race even after pumping $23 million into Ossoff's campaign. It seems their political proposals lack public appeal and this may be a result of their disconnect from reality. The election itself may not be representative enough to reflect the country's overall public opinion, but evidently, ordinary Americans care more about employment, the economy, the cost of living and other practical issues. Left-wing elites have failed to address these grass-roots concerns, let alone being able to re-assemble the fragmented society into an integrated whole. US bipartisan competition has become increasingly absurd, and this will for sure consume Trump's ruling power.

Posted in: OBSERVER

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