President Donald Trump has received almost universally negative press coverage since taking office, and the national media needs to find a "balance" in its reporting, Newsmax CEO Christopher Ruddy said Sunday.
Joining the roundtable discussion for the first time as an ABC News contributor, Ruddy told "This Week" host George Stephanopoulos that a recent Harvard study of Trump's first 100 days found the received 80 percent negative press coverage.
"Never had there been anything like this," Ruddy said of findings by the Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy that there was nearly universal press negativity in Trump coverage.
"There hasn't been anything positive," he added. Meanwhile, Ruddy noted that Trump's achievements are consistently downplayed or ignored.
"A week ago, the Chinese opened their markets to U.S. businesses," Ruddy said. "Presidents have been trying to do it for 30 years. Donald Trump did this in three months.
"He's just bought tens of thousands of jobs with that arms deal," he also noted of the agreement signed over the weekend with Saudi Arabia during Trump's first overseas visit.
Ruddy also pushed back on arguments from mainstream journalists that Trump himself is creating his own problems with "missteps."
"You don't want to report" on the positive news, Ruddy countered. "I think there's a balance. Criticizing the president is fine.”
But Ruddy said Trump is on a learning curve since he is not a politician, and he cited poll data suggesting that Trump voters have not deserted him despite the media attacks.
Ruddy said the White House certainly needs "to synchronize their messages," but nevertheless pointed out: "It's a new presidency. This is not the first time that presidential administrations have had messaging problems."
Ruddy also defended the president's firing of FBI Director James Comey. He said that the recent reports of an internal memo claiming possible obstruction indicated that Trump shows smart instincts in terminating the director.
Ruddy said he thought it was "weird" that Comey wouldn't simply advise the president not to discuss the Russian probe with him, or even report the matter to the attorney general, but instead wrote a self-serving memo to himself which he placed in a file.
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