Media Coverage of Political Scandals

40 Pages Posted: 29 Dec 2008 Last revised: 27 Jan 2009

See all articles by Riccardo Puglisi

Riccardo Puglisi

University of Pavia; University of Milan - Centro Studi Luca d'Agliano (LdA)

James M. Snyder

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) - Department of Political Science & Department of Economics

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Date Written: December 2008

Abstract

We analyze the coverage of U.S. political scandals by U.S. newspapers during the past decade. Using automatic keyword-based searches we collected data on 35 scandals and approximately 200 newspapers. We find that Democratic-leaning newspapers -- i.e., those with a higher propensity to endorse Democratic candidates in elections -- give relatively more coverage to scandals involving Republican politicians than scandals involving Democratic politicians, while Republican-leaning newspapers tend to do the opposite. This is true even when controlling for the average partisan leanings of readers. In contrast, newspapers appear to cater to the partisan tastes of readers only for local scandals.

Suggested Citation

Puglisi, Riccardo and Snyder, James M., Media Coverage of Political Scandals (December 2008). NBER Working Paper No. w14598. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1320844

Riccardo Puglisi (Contact Author)

University of Pavia ( email )

Corso Strada Nuova, 65
27100 Pavia, 27100
Italy

University of Milan - Centro Studi Luca d'Agliano (LdA) ( email )

Via P. Amedeo 34
Milano, Mi 20122
Italy

James M. Snyder

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) - Department of Political Science & Department of Economics ( email )

E53-457
Cambridge, MA 02139
United States
617-253-2669 (Phone)

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