Voting fraud, according to study after study, is rare. Mail-in ballots are, with a few exceptions, a safe way to vote.
But millions of Americans have come to believe something radically different: They think the Nov. 3 election could very well end up being stolen. ...
Where would they get such an idea?
Conventional wisdom might say it comes from false stories and memes spread on social media, originating from foreign troublemakers trying to influence the election results ...
Not so, says a major new study: It’s the American mainstream press that’s doing most of the dirty work.
Eager to look neutral - and worried about being accused of lefty partisanship - mainstream news organizations across the political spectrum have bent over backward to aid and abet Trump’s disinformation campaign about voting by mail by blasting his false claims out in headlines, tweets and news alerts, according to the Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University.*
* "Our findings here suggest that Donald Trump has perfected the art of harnessing mass media to disseminate and at times reinforce his disinformation campaign by using three core standard practices of professional journalism.
"These three are: elite institutional focus (if the President says it, it’s news); headline seeking (if it bleeds, it leads); and balance, neutrality, or the avoidance of the appearance of [media] taking a side."