Pumas 4 Palin

Rasmussen Reports sheds negative light on media coverage of Palin

Posted on: September 7, 2008

51% Say Reporters Are Trying To Hurt Palin

 

Over half of U.S. voters (51%) think reporters are trying to hurt Sarah Palin with their news coverage, and 24% say those stories make them more likely to vote for Republican presidential candidate John McCain in November.

Thirty-nine percent (39%) also believe the GOP vice presidential nominee has better experience to be president of the United States than Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama. [sic]

The potential problem for Democrats is that Obama, the junior U.S. senator from Illinois and a former state legislator, is the party’s standard-bearer, while Palin, an ex-mayor and now governor of Alaska, is number two on her party’s ticket. [sic]

Just a week ago 67% of voters told Rasmussen Reports they didn’t know enough about Palin, only the second woman ever to be on a national political ticket, to comment on her. Heading into last night’s speech, however, 52% had a favorable opinion of Alaska’s Governor.

Since McCain announced Palin as his running mate on Friday, she has been subjected to an unprecedented wave of negative media stories, many focused on her personal life and especially the pregnancy of her unmarried 17-year-old daughter. The focus of the coverage, especially in the blogosphere, has even prompted Obama to distance himself from it.

Republicans have responded angrily, and the media was the target of numerous negative comments over the first two nights of the GOP convention. Several aides to Hillary Clinton, who Obama defeated for the Democratic presidential nomination, also have criticized the media coverage for its sexist tone.

In the new survey, although 85% say they are following news stories about Palin at least somewhat closely, just five percent (5%) think reporters are trying to help her with their coverage, while 35% believe reporters are providing unbiased coverage. [sic]

The findings, nevertheless, are troublesome for the embattled news industry and parallel what voters said in surveys earlier this summer. Sixty-eight percent (68%) of voters now believe most reporters try to help the candidate they want to win, and 49% believe reporters are trying to help Obama this year. Only 14% think they are trying to help McCain. In another survey, 55% said media bias is a bigger problem for the electoral process than large campaign donations.

Although women voters by a 48% to 35% margin believe the coverage of Palin reveals a double standard in the media, they continue to support Obama more than men. Palin in her comments already has made clear that one of her key missions is to lure women voters disaffected by Clinton’s defeat in the Democratic primaries to the McCain column.

(Emphasis added)

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