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HOW Media Coverage ImpactED VOTING IN THE 2020 ELECTION

By Amber Hubenschmidt

The 2020 election was talked about on almost every website, social media app, and news channel. One of the biggest topics in relation to the election was the media. Questions like “is it fake news?” and “are certain channels biased?” were frequently asked by Americans.

Longtime Republican voter, Lucy G., said she was voting in person due to mail fraud rumors she heard about on social media, “Trump said to vote at the polls, so that’s exactly what I’m doing. I also saw a bunch of talk on Facebook about voter fraud by mail and early voting, so I wanted to wait until Election Day to vote in person.”

First-time voter, Larry Downs, also heard rumors about voting by mail, but felt the opposite way:

“I heard the rumors about mail fraud, and I think that’s just a manipulation tactic by Trump because he knows a lot of Democrats will be voting by mail, which is exactly what I’m doing since I’m a college student living out of my registered home state. I wasn’t going to let my vote not get counted, especially since it's my first time voting.”

According to a 2017 study by the Brennan Center for Justice, the rate of voter fraud is less than 0.0009% in the United States. Americans are actually more likely to get struck by lightning in 2020 than to commit election fraud, according to Business Insider.

Independent voter, Tara J., said she didn’t vote at all this year, “All I saw on social media and the news was Trump and Biden, and I don’t like either, so I didn’t feel right voting for a third candidate that I know nothing about. I feel like both the media and Americans are both to blame.”

A 2016 study even showed the difference in airtime between candidates, according to the