Reporting Corruption in Brazil: The Odebrecht Plea Bargain in Jornal Nacional
16 Pages Posted: 24 Nov 2018
Date Written: May 16, 2018
Recent research suggests that, by informing citizens about politicians’ corrupt behavior, the media plays an important role in promoting democratic accountability in Brazil. Yet most of this work assumes that media coverage is politically neutral, overlooking a long-established literature on partisan bias in the news. This paper investigates the existence of bias in the coverage of the most pervasive corruption scandal ever documented in Brazilian politics – the Odebrecht case. Dubbed the “end of the world” plea bargain, the Odebrecht scandal involved the three spheres of public administration, executive and legislative powers, and politicians of all the major political parties. As such, it offers a unique opportunity for the study of media bias in Brazil, which can be potentially extended to other countries where Odebrecht operated.
Keywords: Corruption, Media Bias, Brazil, Scandal, Lavajato
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