Election Coverage Positively Trivial; Strategy Upstages Policy Issues

The Washington Times (Washington, DC), February 4, 2008 | Go to article overview

Election Coverage Positively Trivial; Strategy Upstages Policy Issues


Byline: Jennifer Harper, THE WASHINGTON TIMES

The stories may be kind - but there's little meat on them.

The entire field of White House hopefuls is getting more positive coverage than negative, according to an analysis of election news stories released today by the Center for Media and Public Affairs (CMPA). Discussion of important policy issues was minimal, however, upstaged by insider speculation or the details of political strategies.

The study analyzed 765 stories broadcast from Dec. 16 to Jan. 27 on NBC, CBS, ABC and Fox News.

Candidate bashing was not the norm: In more than 22 hours of broadcasts, 62 percent of the stories featuring Democratic candidates were positive in nature. Among stories focusing on the Republican field, 58 percent were positive.

"Where's the beef?" the study asked, in search of proverbial "red meat" content.

Only 20 percent of the stories contained any substantive discussion of real issues, the kind of content that voters say they pine for, according to recent studies by the CMPA, Pew Research Center and other groups. The remaining coverage endlessly teased apart the tactics of contenders along the campaign trail or addressed the "what-ifs" of the presidential race and the potential victor.

"Issue coverage goes up and down from election to election, but horse race coverage is forever," said CMPA director Robert Lichter. "It's a classic problem. Voters simply don't follow politics like the press. Journalists have heard those stump speeches a hundred times, so they rely on analysis to flesh things out. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Election Coverage Positively Trivial; Strategy Upstages Policy Issues
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.