National or European? EP Election Campaign Themes in the News Media

European Electoral Studies, Vol. 7, (2012), No. 1, pp. 30-41

12 Pages Posted: 23 Dec 2014

See all articles by Jan Kovar

Jan Kovar

Institute of International Relations Prague (Ústavu mezinárodních vztahů); University of New York in Prague; Metropolitan University Prague

Kamil Kovar

Charles University in Prague - CERGE-EI, a joint workplace of Charles University and the Economics Institute of the Czech Academy of Sciences

Date Written: December 24, 2011

Abstract

According to the dominant framework, European Parliament (EP) elections are second-order elections, in essence national contests ‘by other means’. They are not about the personalities and parties at the European level, or the direction of the EU policy agenda; instead, they are fought over domestic rather than European issues and topics, and the political parties collude to keep the issue of Europe off the domestic agenda. This paper aims to analyse one aspect of the second-order election (SOE) model, namely the fact that national political issues and concerns dominate SOE campaigns. We focus on EP election campaigns as portrayed in the news media based on a premise that large proportion of election campaigns consists of media coverage. Based on a content and thematic analysis (N = 434), the article integrates the second-order election model with media behaviours. The results show that, indeed, national political themes and domestic geographic scope dominate the EP election campaign in the media. The findings and their implications are discussed in the light of relevant literature.

Suggested Citation

Kovar, Jan and Kovar, Kamil, National or European? EP Election Campaign Themes in the News Media (December 24, 2011). European Electoral Studies, Vol. 7, (2012), No. 1, pp. 30-41, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2541620

Jan Kovar (Contact Author)

Institute of International Relations Prague (Ústavu mezinárodních vztahů) ( email )

Nerudova 3
Prague 1 - Malá Strana, 118 50
Czech Republic

University of New York in Prague ( email )

Londýnská 41
Prague, 120 00
Czech Republic

Metropolitan University Prague ( email )

Dubecska 900/10
Prague 10, 140 00
Czech Republic

Kamil Kovar

Charles University in Prague - CERGE-EI, a joint workplace of Charles University and the Economics Institute of the Czech Academy of Sciences ( email )

Politickych veznu 7
Prague, 111 21
Czech Republic

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