Define fair reporting? I would define fair reporting as having a press corps that would air both sides, whilst not blindly indulging the fallacy of the middle. That would entail free and fearless reporting which does not sit back passively as goal posts are moved, threats to withhold access are leveraged, and false equivalences are used to bully certain kinds of coverage.
So that would mean if one side states something that is trivially and demonstrably false, such as the claim that “Obama has already drafted his inauguration speech,” then the press corps wouldn’t simply iterate both campaigns’ press releases on the matter, but would do the work and state unequivocally what the truth was.
I would also regard as a constitutive aspect of objective journalism - the necessity that the press corps to avoid sensationalism, and focus on issues and policy, and not mindless trivia, gossip, innuendo, and other such nonsense.
Given all this, I think the fact that poll after poll shows American overwhelmingly supports the Democratic platform on basically everything when you dispassionately break down the issues, contra the Republican platform, a fair press corps would have Obama far, far ahead. Indeed, I think a fair press corps tradition, if it existed, would necessarily entail that the two decades would be regarded by citizens of such a world as some kind of bizarre, dystopian, counter-factual scenario which would scarcely be regarded as believable fiction if it was related to said citizen. You know, much how the rest of the world views American politics and political discourse. :lol: