« | »

Shocker: Obama Got Best Media Ever

In the rush of events we almost overlooking this press release from the non-partisan Center for Media and Public Affairs, and its shocking revelations:


Democrats Extended Their Lead Over GOP in Good Press

December 2, 2008
Contact: Donald Rieck

TV news election coverage of Barack Obama was twice as favorable as John McCain’s and Sarah Palin’s coverage, according to the a new report from the Center for Media and Public Affairs (CMPA) Election 2008 NewsWatch.  Obama’s coverage was more favorable than any other presidential nominee’s coverage since CMPA began tracking TV election news in 1988

These results are the final tallies from the Center for Media and Public Affairs (CMPA) 2008 Election NewsWatch Project. They are based on a scientific content analysis of 1197 general election news stories that aired from August 23 to November 4 (41 hours 6 minutes of airtime) on ABC World News Tonight, CBS Evening News, NBC Nightly News…


President-elect Barack Obama received 68% positive evaluations on the network evening news shows during the general election. His treatment was twice as favorable as John McCain’s 33% positive and Sarah Palin’s 34% positive evaluations.


“Voters …want fundamental change.  The kind Obama is talking about.” –Mark Halperin, Time analyst (ABC, 10/27)

“I don’t really recognize John McCain as the person I voted for in the primaries.” –voter (ABC, 10/22)

“Palin’s carefully cultivated Joe Sixpack image is now bumping up against a six-figure wardrobe.” – Nancy Cordes (CBS, 10/22)

Obama’s 68% positive press is the strongest showing CMPA has ever recorded for a presidential candidate, since we began monitoring election news in 1988. He easily eclipsed previous leader John Kerry’s 59% positive evaluations on network news in 2004. Conversely, McCain’s tally of 33% positive evaluations was the worst showing since George H.W. Bush received only 29% positive press in 1988.

Averaged across the all elections since 1988, broadcast network coverage of the six Democratic presidential nominees has been evenly balanced – 50% positive vs. 50% negative press. The average coverage of the six Republican candidates has been 34% positive vs. 66% negative, a margin of 2 to 1 negative.

Obama’s 2 to 1 lead in good press also held true for the candidates’ issue coverage, which includes evaluations of their policies and proposals. A slight majority (53%) of statements about Obama’s policies and proposals were favorable, compared to one out of four (24%) favorable comments about McCain and one out of six (16%) favorable toward Palin. The combined totals were 52% positive issue coverage of the Democrats and 24% positive toward the GOP.


“An internal campaign memo showed that even McCain’s own focus group didn’t buy (his tax policy)” — Andrea Mitchell (CBS, 10/16)

“They (voters) like Obama’s plan to pay for prevention.” – Nancy Cordes (CBS, 10/28)

The three broadcast networks were very similar in the tone of their coverage.  ABC and CBS had 68% positive coverage of Obama. NBC gave Obama 73% positive coverage.  The networks were similar in the negative coverage of McCain.  McCain received only 31% positive coverage on NBC, 33% positive coverage on CBS, and 36% positive coverage on ABC

On the network newscasts, the Democratic ticket received 91% positive comments about their standing and prospects in the horse race, compared to only 31% positive comments about the Republicans – a margin of 60 percentage points

Mr. Obama got the most favorable media coverage since the CMPA has been keeping records.

Despite being the most liberal, least experienced candidate for the Presidency in our nation’s history.

Color us gobsmacked.

This article was posted by Steve on Saturday, December 6th, 2008. Comments are currently closed.

6 Responses to “Shocker: Obama Got Best Media Ever”

  1. proreason says:

    But didn’t Shep Smith derisively tell us that the media was just reflecting the public’s sentiment?

    Was the election gap after ALL THE VOTES were counted 60%?

  2. No doubt this headline was meant to read “OBAMA’S COVERAGE WAS HISTRIONIC TOO.”

  3. BigOil says:

    After delivering 91% positive coverage for BO on ABC, CBS, and NBC newscasts…the networks should be renamed PRAVDA.

  4. ezra says:

    I’m new to these parts so I’m not sure if the sarcasm is meant to imply that any of this really matters.

    But I do love that the first example of pro-Obama bias quotes Mark Halperin, who is generally reviled by Obamaphiles, and who called press bias during this election “the most disgusting failure of [the press] since the Iraq war.”


    So when a guy like this says “it’s raining”, maybe you should consider the possibility that it is in fact just raining.

    I like Pew on the subject. Same topic, but less fluffy:

    Winning the Media Campaign

    And here’s where it gets good:

    Public Knowledge of Current Affairs Little Changed by News and Information Revolutions

    Winds of Political Change Haven’t Shifted Public’s Ideology Balance

  5. proreason says:

    Drink deeply Ezra.

    Are these the best links you could find to downplay the blatantly obvious extreme bias of the MSM? Surely Kos, Huffington, etc. have better material with more creative usage of statistics.

    The facts are that Obamy voters can’t even identify which party has the majority in congress. Like Obamy, his voters are idiots. And who educates them? The MSM of course.

    The most dangerous enemy of this country is Politicians, and the Media is a very close second.

  6. Steve says:

    “Drink deeply Ezra.”

    I believe Ezra was agreeing with the article — and most of us.

« Front Page | To Top
« | »