The role of journalism at its peak during the election

Taylor Willmarth, Video editor

After four years of Donald Trump as POTUS, we have learned that his administration relies heavily on lies and disinformation. In some estimates, Trump has made more than 20,000 false or misleading claims. The Trump administration has also launched extensive attacks on the news media over the past four years. This has caused a need for journalists to defend their credibility and simultaneously continue to deliver the truth. 

Freedom of the press is a pillar of our democracy, and it’s guaranteed in the constitution. Journalists are more important now than ever before, and we need a President who respects that. 

We also know, from Trump’s history, that he has an inability to accept any sort of loss. At about 2:30 a.m. on election night, President Trump took to the stage to claim victory. However, millions of legitimate votes from key battleground states had not been counted. 

“This is a fraud on the American public. This is an embarrassment to our country. We were getting ready to win this election. Frankly, we did win this election,” Trump claimed. 

Trump’s late-night statement was divorced from reality, and it was the duty of journalists to explain that to the American people.

“The President of the United States [is] castrating the facts of the election…results that have been reported tonight, falsely claiming that he has won the election and disenfranchising millions of voters whose ballots have not been counted,” CBS Evening News anchor Norah O’Donnell said shortly after Trump’s remarks. 

Journalists must continue to check the facts and deliver the truth. No matter the outcome of this election, our nation is in grave danger if freedom of the press is not restored to its pedestal. This country deserves quality reporting. It is important to understand that journalists are not the enemy of the people.  The American press are the American people.