The US media (traditional and social) has a lot to answer for.
It was much better this time, they knew to avoid the crazy nonsense about Hunter Biden, but they still spread a lot of rubbish and I entirely expect that this only helps Republicans.
There’s a poisoned cycle of disinformation operating in our democracies (here in the UK, too) where websites relying on ad impressions will print something they know to be outlandish, unfounded or suspicious just for the clicks (often as “opinion”), either a nonsense story or a staged event.
It’s then spread all across social media into the echo chambers of the right-wing. They don’t care about truth and facts, they just care that their biases are supported and their fears proven.
There’s an interesting Twitter account which analyzes the most popular content on Facebook each day. Every time I see it they have a list of ten of the most shared links, and usually 9/10 of them are Ben Shapiro, Fox News, Breitbart or Oann.
As you can imagine, the stories they push are almost always entirely fictitious or speculation to appeal to the conspiracy theorists and people who don’t want facts, they just want their political fanaticism reinforced.
After this is over a lot of work needs to be done to enforce standards in news media and build some kind of defense against this propaganda. If we were in a hot war with either Russia or China this mechanism would do serious harm to our defense, and we need to make sure that cannot happen.