Donald Trump reading newspaper in the Oval Office

Photo via Gage Skidmore/Flickr Daniel Novta/Flickr (CC BY 2.0) Obama White House/Flickr (PD) (CC-BY-SA) Remix by Jason Reed

Here’s where the White House thinks you should get your news

Less than 1 percent of 'West Wing Reads' links are from neutral websites.


Andrew Wyrich


Posted on Aug 7, 2017   Updated on May 22, 2021, 9:30 pm CDT

While President Donald Trump and his administration continues to pound the American press on a near-daily basis, the White House has quietly launched “West Wing Reads,” a daily newsletter that blasts links from around the web to his followers and supporters.

The newsletter calls itself a list of “the best stories that the West Wing is reading,” and one Trump administration staffer said it tries to focus on stories that “may have been missed by the mainstream media.”

Trump has been besieged by scandals, investigations and a whirlwind of resignations and hires in his administration since he took office—all of which has been covered thoroughly by media outlets. But you wouldn’t know that if you only got your news from West Wing Reads.

Of the nearly 150 non-special edition links the newsletter has sent out as of July 30, more than half of the outlets have been described “right” or “right center” by Media Bias/Fact Check, a website that rates media sources on their reporting and editorial pages.

By comparison, only 28 percent of the links were from publications rated “center-left” or “left,” and .08 percent came from outlets with no bias, according to the website’s ratings.

Four of the top five media outlets linked to by West Ring Reads were rated “right-center” or “right” bias by the website. The newsletter has posted links to the Wall Street Journal 14 times, the Washington Times 12 times, the Hill 11 times, the National Review 10 times, and the Washington Examiner 10 times. On the Hill was rated “left-center.”

West Wing Reads Graph
The Daily Dot

It’s not shocking that Trump, a Republican president, would mostly have links to conservative-leaning outlets. However, Trump has consistently called out “fake news” on the campaign trail and during Twitter rants—and his administration’s newsletter has linked to at least a few outlets with questionable content.

West Wing Reads linked to Breitbart, the notorious alt-right website once run by White House adviser Steve Bannon, twice. Media Bias/Fact Check rates the website as “right-bias” with “mixed” factual reporting.

“The content ranges from extreme right wing bias to conspiracy to racism,” Media Bias/Fact Check says.  “Breitbart has been accused of publishing fake news for the purpose of a political agenda.”

The newsletter has also linked to the LifeZette, Daily Signal and Daily Caller, all of which are listed as “mixed” on Media Bias/Fact Check for factual reporting. The website also notes that several claims on Daily Caller have been found false by Snopes and Politifact.

In short, if you want to avoid “fake news,” not even a White House newsletter is a rock-solid choice.

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*First Published: Aug 7, 2017, 6:30 am CDT