There is a grand total of three Republicans in the White House press corps, according to an annual Politico survey of the media pool that covers President Donald Trump and the White House.
The poll surveyed 63 members of the corps and found that only 5 percent of them were registered Republicans, which equates to only 3 people. On the other hand, the poll found there are about 10 registered Democrats in the press group, which breaks down to about 16 percent of the entire pool.
Independents and those who choose not to register to vote made up 37 percent of the press corps each, according to the poll. Five percent of the corps said they are registered as something other than a Republican or Democrat.
While the number of Republicans in the corps is small, it’s an increase from last year. The same poll found in 2016 that of the 72 White House press members asked, zero were registered Republicans. At the time, a significantly larger number of the press pool, 60 percent, said they weren’t registered to vote.
The mainstream media have come under increased scrutiny over the last year or two, largely from Trump and Republicans. Trump and his supporters have repeatedly said that the mainstream media peddle “fake news,” and many conservatives and mainstream Americans continue to believe the press corps is too biased and out-of-touch with the American heartland.
This feeling isn’t missed by the press pool members themselves: They told Politico that on a scale of 1 to 10, they believe the corps is a 6 when asked how badly they are “disconnected from the rest of America.” Still, those surveyed gave the Washington Post, the New York Times and CNN the best marks for coverage of Trump’s White House — outlets that are routinely bashed for being out-of-touch.
On the flip side, members say the Trump administration is much better than the Barack Obama administration about giving access to the press. And 45 percent said they believe the press corps is biased against Trump and his administration, though 53 percent said they aren’t biased at all.