9% Believe Journalists Were Right to Dismiss Lab Leak Theory

Just 9% of voters believe journalists were right to dismiss the possibility that the coronavirus began in a Wuhan, China laboratory. A Scott Rasmussen national survey found that another 22% see no ill intent in the media coverage. That includes 12% who consider the dismissal a serious but innocent mistake and 10% who think the journalists were misled by government officials.

However, 40% believe the journalists’ behavior was not so innocent. Twenty-seven percent (27%) believe journalists rejected the lab leak theory because Donald Trump suggested it. Another 7% blamed partisan political considerations while 6% cited a media desire to protect the Chinese government.

Twenty-three percent (23%) are not sure how to explain it and 6% offered some other reason.

Most Republicans (55%) believe the journalists refused to cover it because Trump suggested the idea or for other partisan political reasons. On the other hand, 45% of Democrats see no ill intent.

The survey also found that 71% are following news about the lab leak topic. That includes 31% who are following it Very Closely.

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Note: Neither Scott Rasmussen, ScottRasmussen.com, nor RMG Research, Inc. have any affiliation with Rasmussen Reports. While Scott Rasmussen founded that firm, he left more than seven years ago and has had no involvement since that time.


The survey of 1,200 Registered Voters was conducted by Scott Rasmussen using a mixed mode approach from June 10-12, 2021. Field work for the survey was conducted by RMG Research, Inc. Most respondents were contacted online or via text while 232 were contacted using automated phone polling techniques. Online respondents were selected from a list of Registered Voters and through a process of Random Digital Engagement. Certain quotas were applied, and the sample was lightly weighted by geography, gender, age, race, education, internet usage, and political party to reasonably reflect the nation’s population of Registered Voters. Other variables were reviewed to ensure that the final sample is representative of that population.

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