Monday, November 03, 2008

A “can’t go wrong” election call

The Media Research Center’s Rich Noyes at Newsbusters today - - -

Going into Tuesday’s election, polls show Democrat Barack Obama with a modest lead over Republican John McCain, but one group whose support of Obama should not be in doubt is the national media.

Surveys of journalists conducted over the past three decades show the media elite are extremely consistent in choosing Democratic candidates on Election Day.

If only journalists were permitted to vote, we would never have had a President Reagan or a President Bush, but would have instead faced Presidents McGovern, Mondale, Dukakis and Kerry. It wouldn’t have been close.

In their 1986 book, The Media Elite, political scientists S. Robert Lichter, Stanley Rothman and Linda S. Lichter reported the results of their survey of 240 journalists at the nation’s top media outlets: ABC, CBS, NBC, PBS, the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Time, Newsweek and U.S. News & World Report.

When asked about their voting patterns, journalists admitted their preference for Democrats:

Of those who say they voted for major party candidates, the proportion of leading journalists who supported the Democratic candidate never drops below 80 percent. In 1972, when more than 60 percent of all voters chose Nixon, over 80 percent among the media elite voted for McGovern.

This does not appear to reflect any unique aversion to Nixon. Despite the well-publicized tensions between the press and his administration, leading journalists in 1976 preferred Carter over Ford by the same margin. In fact, in the Democratic landslide of 1964, journalists picked Johnson over Goldwater by a sixteen-to-one margin, or 94 to 6 percent.
Lichter’s team focused on journalists at the very top national news organizations. Other surveys of journalists have discovered that the whole profession shares the same liberal bent, although the media elite’s liberalism is the most extreme:[.] …

Noyes reviewed a number of surveys of journalist’s voting preferences. Here’s an example:
Journalists Picked Mondale over Reagan: In 1985, the Los Angeles Times polled news and editorial staffers at newspapers around the country, weighting the sample so that newspapers with large circulations were more heavily represented. Once again, pollsters discovered a heavy Democratic skew. When asked how they voted in the 1984 election, more than twice as many chose liberal Walter Mondale (58 percent) over the conservative incumbent Ronald Reagan (26 percent), even as the country picked Reagan in a 59 to 41 percent landslide.
Noyes closes with - - -

Taken as a whole, these polls firmly establish the press’s pattern of preferring Democrats at the voting booth. During the nine presidential elections for which data on the media’s preferences are available, each Democrat won landslide support from journalists, sometimes by four-to-one or five-to-one margins.

The percentage of reporters selecting the GOP candidate never exceeded 26 percent, even as the public chose Republicans in five of the eight elections, with margins of support ranging from a low of 38 percent (Bush in 1992) to a high of 61 percent (Nixon in 1972).

At a minimum, these statistics portray a media elite whose political thinking is to the left of most Americans.

Hosting CNN’s Reliable Sources on April 21, 1996, Washington Post media writer Howard Kurtz reacted to the Freedom Forum’s poll: “Clearly anybody looking at those numbers, if they’re even close to accurate, would conclude that there is a diversity problem in the news business, and it’s not just the kind of diversity we usually talk about, which is not getting enough minorities in the news business, but political diversity, as well. Anybody who doesn’t see that is just in denial.”

Noyes’ entire column’s here.


Here's one way of summarizing the research findings Noyes presents: MSM journalists are even more liberal than Massachusetts voters.

Like just about everything else I’ve read by Noyes, his column today is well-written and fact-based.

Like Michael Barone, Charles Krauthammer and Jeff Jacoby, Noyes does the research, lays out the facts, and then offers sound, irrefutable conclusions.

The Media Research Center and Newsbusters are “must visit” sites for all of us who don’t want to be victimized by the liberal/leftist bias that fills our newspapers and airwaves.

On the other hand, anyone who wants to go on being comfortable saying things like, “but I’m sure Katie Couric said it,” and “ I didn’t see it in the Times,” should stay away from MRC and Newsbusters.


Ex-prosecutor said...

It's not just the media. Yesterday, at the church I attend, a professor from a local upper level college told the results of a sample vote taken on campus: students, 3 to 1 Obama; instructors, 50 to 1 Obama.