Eddie Scarry writes for the Federalist about another example of media malfeasance.

New York Times headline, Feb. 20: “A Big Opportunity to Define Trump as Unacceptable.”

The short item by Times Deputy Opinion Editor Patrick Healy follows up on an unintentionally hilarious focus group session the paper conducted last week, wherein 11 out of 13 voters who supported Joe Biden in 2020 say they now support Trump. Among the switching voters was a man who said he would support Trump even though he believed him to have committed “sexual abuse” and two others who said criminal convictions in any of the charges against him would not change their minds.

Healy: “But I was less surprised by the big vote for Trump than by this: The group didn’t blame Trump for things he was responsible or accountable for.”

There are, in fact, plenty of things Trump is responsible for — his failure to secure the U.S. southern border and his regretful decision to awkwardly hold up a Bible in the middle of a riot, to name two — but that’s not where the author went.

“For instance, several people linked their economic troubles to Covid, but they didn’t put any blame on Trump for that,” Healy wrote. “Some were upset with the end of abortion rights nationally, but they didn’t tie that to Trump’s Supreme Court appointments. Several wanted bipartisanship, but they didn’t blame Trump for his hand in sinking the recent bipartisan border deal. One person, a Latina, blamed Trump for worsening racism in the country and recounted a searing incident that happened to her — but she was among the 11 who would vote for him anyway.” …

… As for the rest, it appears Healy is simply frustrated that some media narratives are shot. Blaming the spread of a highly contagious airborne virus on one man doesn’t really work anymore. Neither the Supreme Court nor Trump ended abortion access, and the former president, as ever, remains mercurial on the subject, or otherwise recommends compromise. Also, asking voters to fault Trump, who holds no office at the moment, for the failure of an empty “border” bill to pass through Congress is, to put it generously, a heavy lift.