The Effect of Fox News Channel on U.S. Elections: 2000-2020

42 Pages Posted: 4 May 2021

See all articles by Elliott Ash

Elliott Ash

ETH Zürich

Sergio Galletta

University of Bergamo; ETH Zürich

Matteo Pinna

ETH Zürich

Christopher Warshaw

George Washington University - Department of Political Science

Date Written: April 30, 2021

Abstract

This paper provides a comprehensive assessment of the effect of Fox News Channel (FNC) on elections in the United States. FNC is the highest-rated channel on cable television and has a documented conservative slant. We show that FNC has helped Republican candidates in elections across levels of U.S. government over the past decade. A one standard deviation decrease in FNC’s channel position boosted Republican vote shares by at least .5 percentage points in recent presidential, Senate, House and gubernato- rial elections. The effects of FNC increased steadily between 2004 and 2016 and then plateaued. Survey-based evidence suggests that FNC affects elections by shifting the political preferences of Americans to the right. Overall, the findings suggest that FNC has contributed to the nationalization of United States elections.

Suggested Citation

Ash, Elliott and Galletta, Sergio and Pinna, Matteo and Warshaw, Chris, The Effect of Fox News Channel on U.S. Elections: 2000-2020 (April 30, 2021). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3837457 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3837457

Elliott Ash

ETH Zürich ( email )

Rämistrasse 101
ZUE F7
Zürich, 8092
Switzerland

Sergio Galletta

University of Bergamo ( email )

Via Salvecchio, 19
Bergamo, 24129
Italy

ETH Zürich ( email )

Rämistrasse 101
ZUE F7
Zürich, 8092
Switzerland

Matteo Pinna

ETH Zürich ( email )

Zurichbergstrasse 18
Zürich, 8032
Switzerland

Chris Warshaw (Contact Author)

George Washington University - Department of Political Science ( email )

Washington, DC 20052
United States

HOME PAGE: chriswarshaw.com

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