Bernie Sanders Media Blackout Could Help Him Win, Says Ryan Grim

Democratic presidential candidate and U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) smiles at a Democratic presidential forum on Latino issues at Cal State L.A. on November 17, 2019 in Los Angeles, California.
Mario Tama / Getty Images

The Intercept‘s D.C. Bureau Chief Ryan Grim released a video in which he addressed the media coverage of Bernie Sanders — also commonly called the “Bernie Blackout” — and why he believes it could help the Vermont Senator take the win in 2020.

During the video, Grim begins by noting reports that Donald Trump received 20 times more coverage than Sanders during the 2016 primaries. He continues to highlight that Hillary Clinton got approximately twice as much airtime as Sanders, as a New York Times’ public editor reportedly observed. This lack of media coverage “helped stall” Sanders in the 2016 election, Grim says.

According to Grim, one of Sanders’ obstacles to serious media coverage is the media belief that the presidential candidate can’t win against Trump. Grim’s comment was followed by various clips of news personalities talking about Sanders in a negative light, including some labeling him a “socialist” and a “recipe for electoral disaster.”

Grim noted the recent In These Times report that found that Sanders received less airtime and more negative mentions on MSNBC than his top Democratic rivals — Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren.

The 41-year-old author notes that Sanders beats Trump in many recent polls. Notably, Sanders reportedly beats Trump in three swing states.

Near the end of the video, Grim notes the standard presidential primary pattern: “candidates rise, face media scrutiny, and then they drop in the polls.”

“But what if the media pretends you’re not rising at all?” Grim asked, noting that Sanders’ gains in the polls are consistently ignored.

“If Sanders continues to rise in Iowa while the press ignores him, there’s a chance he could skip the scrutiny phase and climb right into first without being attacked as a frontrunner.”

As The Inquisitr previously reported, Sanders’ media blackout was recently noted by progressive commentator David Pakman. The 35-year-old political pundit said that discussions of the exact nature of the relationship between media coverage and polling are not as important as recognizing that the Vermont Senator is being excluded from media coverage.

“It’s a red alert problem that is a type of interference in the primary,” he said.

Sanders’ National Campaign Co-Chair Nina Turner recently claimed that the media coverage of Sanders is “part of a much larger pattern.” She continued to suggest that anyone with the support of working-class and multiracial working-class support is misunderstood, dismissed, or ignored.

Turner went on to note the recent PBS piece on the 2020 election that didn’t mention Sanders once.