Who’s More Trustworthy: Limbaugh or Hannity?

April 8, 2015

Submitted by:  Veronica Coffin


(This is the first of four articles by Fred Gielow based on a recent Accuracy in Media survey)

Trustworthiness is probably—or should be—the most important factor for those providing news and information to the public each day. How trustworthy are your news sources? How trustworthy are the television stations you watch? The radio stations you listen to? The Internet websites you visit? The newspapers you read?

Accuracy in Media attempted to answer these questions by distributing a survey on news source trustworthiness along with a letter sent recently to thousands of its supporters. Many responded, and the results of the survey are quite interesting.

Survey takers were asked to rate the trustworthiness of news sources on a scale of 1 to 10. 1 represented 0 percent trust; 10 represented 100 percent trust. A total of 988 surveys (representing all the states plus a survey from Guam) was tabulated and analyzed. It should be noted this was not a scientific survey. Responders were AIM supporters and did not represent a random sample from the population. Nevertheless, the results provide useful insights.

Of the 988 individuals responding, 838 rated Rush Limbaugh and 846 rated Sean Hannity. The average rating for Rush was 9.13, and the average rating for Sean was 9.13. That’s right, the two rated equally in trustworthiness. And the two rated very high in trustworthiness.

A total of 652 individuals rated Mark Levin, producing an average rating of 8.73. A total of 668 rated Laura Ingraham, producing an average rating of 8.73. Again, surprisingly, identical ratings, not as high as Limbaugh and Hannity, but high compared to others.

A total of 551 rated Alan Colmes, while 264 rated Leslie Marshall. Their ratings were 2.37 and 4.13 respectively—rather low on the trustworthiness scale.

Rush Limbaugh Sean Hannity Mark Levin Laura Ingraham Alan Colmes Leslie Marshall
988 988 988 988 988 988
a Rating
for this
838 846 652 668 551 264
9.13 9.13 8.73 8.73 2.37 4.13
518 525 379 351 20 27
17 18 30 23 337 96

Glenn Beck was not included in the survey, but perhaps he should have been. Several survey takers wrote favorable comments about Mr. Beck. It would also be interesting to find out how survey takers would rate the trustworthiness of Bret Baier, Megyn Kelly, Bill O’Reilly, Jeanine Pirro, Greta Van Susteren, Chris Wallace, and a number of others.

Limbaugh and Hannity received the highest trustworthiness ratings of all individuals and groups listed in the survey. Next highest was the Fox News website (8.92), followed by the Fox News TV network (8.88).

Television stations, Internet websites, and newspapers were also rated, but those results will appear in later articles.


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