The neutral reporting of the 1994 Texas Governor's race by four competing newspapers
Warren, Jay A.R.
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For decades, charges have been made that the media's coverage of oolitical candidates is biased. Edith Efi-on (1971) in her book about the 1968 oresidential election said. "Network reporters in alliance with Democratic liberal ooliticians oortraved Hubert Humphrev as a talkative Democratic saint studded over with every virtue known to man. Mr. Nixon is not oortraved as a human being at all but is transmogrified into a demon out of the liberal id" (p. 59). The charges have been made bv almost all ooliticians and candidates, regardless of their political party preferences: but, why? Journalism students are taught to get all sides of a story, to remove their personal feelings from their work. The impartial coverage of events, people, and campaigns is a tenet of journalism. With these guidelines in mind, one would assume that the media's coverage of campaigns should be unbiased and objective. For the most part, the research conducted regarding the media's bias in reporting political campaigns has yielded mixed resuhs, and the answer to the question, "Is the press biased?" still eludes scholars. But, given the basic idea of journalistic objectivity, is there a reason that can be deduced as to why the media's coverage might be biased? Could a newspaper's endorsement have an impact on its coverage of that candidate? Most United States newspapers make editorial endorsements of candidates. Are these newspapers able to keep their editorial endorsements from bleeding into their news pages? This study seeks to answer this question.