Russ Kent: The election is over; the acrimony remains

As you read this, the 2016 presidential election is over.

I hope as I write this Tuesday morning that were no delays or scandals or terrorist attacks or more acts of stupidity Tuesday that may have delayed the results.

Our long national nightmare is over.


But I doubt it.

There was way too much hatred and vitriol in this campaign. Unfortunately, it is going to roll over into the next four years.

There were seats in the U.S. Congress on the line; there are seats on the U.S. Supreme Court on the line. There was a lot riding on this election.

It’s a shame two immature, bullying, juvenile delinquents were vying for the top spot.

Both had good ideals in their platforms. But the good they talked about was out-shouted by the idiocy.

And the media loves idiocy. It results in web hits, pages views and advertising dollars.

So idiocy wins with the media every single time.

I place most of the blame for what our election process has become on the big players in the national media. And secondly on an impotent Republican Party.

Believe it or not, as a pretty staunch conservative, I do not blame the Democratic Party. The democrats discovered a winning strategy and rode it to the White House.

Of course, they did have some help from the media, which for decades has played favorites in national campaigns.

And whether you’ll admit it or not, the overwhelming majority of members of the national media are liberals. And anything the national media writes or reports on is slanted toward that liberal viewpoint.

For years, the media has encouraged liberal-thinking attitudes and a liberal agenda in its writing, reporting and editorials.

That’s not news.

What is news is the fight has gotten more personal.

When Republican candidates were intent on stopping a rising national debt, Democrats accused them of wanting to kill off senior citizens, of wanting disadvantaged children to starve to death.

The media knew this wasn’t true. But the media allowed it. They didn’t question those asinine accusations because they had the same liberal agenda.

But that was only the start of the problem.

The odds were stacked against any Republican presidential candidate. Of course, the GOP had no legitimate presidential candidate, and the faux candidates they nominated were unable — or unwilling — to take on democrats and the media.

Hence, the world became acquainted with Rush Limbaugh and a legion of followers and copy cats who decided to fight fire with fire, to fight insult with insult.

Accuse a GOP candidate of wanting to starve children. Fine. Limbaugh termed all liberals baby-killers.

Beck, Hannity and others followed. They continued to spew insults and idiocy to counter the insults and idiocy spewed by Democratic candidates, which were tacitly endorsed by the national media.

And it’s only gotten worse.

Democrats didn’t have a Rush Limbaugh on their side. But they didn’t need one.

They had the backing of the media, which was very good at picking out soundbites and tidbits to support the Democratic agenda … and it’s own.

Republican candidates were portrayed as boring by the media. And they were, compared to Barack Obama.

But when Obama became a candidate, things really changed.

The mainstream media had a favorite in Barack Obama, and they were going to see him elected, no matter what.

Which led to increased popularity of Fox News. Fox News said it was neutral, but was decidedly conservative in the way it presented news.

And it, along with Limbaugh and Co., did most of the fighting back for the GOP’s not-ready-for-prime-time presidential candidates.

But that failed to stop the liberal onslaught,

Republicans could not counter the media bias.

They had Limbaugh. They had Hannity. They had Beck.

But they also had John McCain and Mitt Romney. B-O-R-I-N-G. Not as boring as the media made them sound, and certainly not as corrupt as the media portrayed, but conservatives nonetheless.

And a conservative is the last thing the national, mainstream media wants in the White House.

So Barack Obama won easily. The GOP never had a chance.

He won even more easily in 2o12

And then 2016 rolled around.

And Donald Trump was born.

Finally, a candidate willing to fight back. He was brash. He was confident. He was an attack dog. He was not afraid to stretch the truth. The cameras loved him.

He was everything the liberal media loved. Oh, except for the fact he was not a democrat.

So the media attacked him. Hillary Clinton attacked him.

Trump was attacked. He fought back.

Trump was insulted. He doubled down on the insults.

He was great entertainment, at first. The mainstream media loved him … but mostly because they though he was making a fool of himself and was anything but a serious candidate.

So they kept him on the air.

The media actually — in a backward kind of way — promoted Trump by giving so little coverage to other GOP candidates.

But that strategy backfired.

Many disenfranchised Republican voters latched on to Trump’s message … and they loved it.

And his support grew.

It grew so much Trump figured out he didn’t need the media. In fact, he attacked the media while he was attacking Hillary Clinton.

A lot of fed-up conservatives loved him for it.

Finally, a candidate not afraid to fight back.

Finally, a candidate who would not cower from a bullying national media or a bullying Democratic party.

So the insults and vitriol and hatred intensified.

And that’s what brought us to Tuesday.

I fear it will never end.

I hope we learned something from this campaign.

But I doubt it.

I have seen countless shows discussing how our national election turned into this circus.

Unfortunately, they all fell flat on their theories.

Not a single show has blamed our embarrassing election on a national media that refuses to acknowledge it is a HUGE part of the problem.

And that, unfortunately, is not going to change anytime soon.

I hope I’m wrong.

Russ Kent


Russ Kent is editor of the Galion Inquirer, Bellville Star and Morrow County Sentinel. Email him with comments or story ideas at