Third Party & Independents Archives

Campaign becomes personality contest as policy issues are ignored

In the third week of June, the percentage of television news coverage on George W. Bush’s personality markedly increased, with 18% of those reports being positive. The latest report from Media Tenor, an independent media analysis institute, shows that this trend was particularly noticeable on NBC and CBS news where Bush’s and John F. Kerry’s personalities were the subject of more 20% of the campaign coverage.

During this same period, coverage of policy issues on ABC and CBS news declined. On ABC, only 31% of the statements on the presidential campaign carried policy information. On NBC, policy-related issues accounted for a little more than half of the coverage of the candidates.

Kerry, returning to the campaign trail after Reagan’s funeral, drew the most attention from the media regarding campaigning. This further highlighted the TV networks’ neglect of his policy proposals, with almost 49% of Kerry-related coverage focusing on campaigning and only 18.3% on policy issues.

Download report with graphics at:

Posted by Isadora Badi at June 21, 2004 9:38 AM