Rasmussen: 55% Say Media Bias Bigger Problem in Politics Than Big Contributions

Rassmussen released an interesting report today that highlighted some trends in todays evolving media. The Rassmussen report indicated that many voters believe that big media may exert a more dangerous influence on politics than big money. Notwithstanding that Democrats overwhelmingly dominated big money and big media in the 2008 election, the Rasmussen poll did validate concerns about the total sellout by big media in favor of Democrats.

Voters agree that big money talks in politics but apparently not as loudly as big media.

Fifty-five percent (55%) of U.S. voters continue to think that media bias is a bigger problem in politics today than big campaign contributions, identical to the finding in August 2008.

Voters ages 30 to 49 are the most wary of the media’s influence on politics today.

Sixty-eight percent (68%) of Republicans and 62% of unaffiliated voters say media bias is the bigger problem in politics, a view shared by just 37% of Democrats. The plurality (46%) of Democrats says campaign contributions are a bigger problem.

Sixty-five percent (65%) of Mainstream voters and 54% of the Political Class agree that the bigger problem facing politics is media bias.

Just before the November 2008 presidential election, 68% of voters said most reporters try to help the candidate they want to win, and 51% believed they were trying to help Democrat Barack Obama. Just seven percent (7%) thought they were trying to help his Republican opponent, John McCain.

Fifty-one percent (51%) of voters say the average reporter is more liberal than they are. Eighteen percent (18%) say that reporter is more conservative, and 20% think their views are about the same ideologically as the average reporter’s.

This Rasmussen study also provides context to the decision by Rupert Murdoch to directly challenge the New York Times in the category of serious news supremacy in the New York market.

CHICAGO News Corp. Chairman Rupert Murdoch confirmed the worst-kept secret in the newspaper industry Tuesday afternoon: The Wall Street Journal is launching a New York Edition next month.

The section takes dead aim at The New York Times, but Murdoch, speaking at the Real Estate Board of New York, said the paper will be giving his New York Post “some competition on their home turf.”

But he did not-so-subtly refer to the Times’ coverage of New York City.

“We believe that in its pursuit of journalism prizes and a national reputation, a certain other New York daily has essentially stopped covering the city the way it once did,” Murdoch said. “In so doing, they have mistakenly overlooked the most fascinating city in the world — and left the interests and concerns of people like you far behind them. I promise you this: The Wall Street Journal will not make that mistake

This all raises the question of whether the large incumbent media organizations that brought news to generations of Americans is willingly conceding their franchise in the name of ideological purity? Can they not see that Murdoch is devouring large pieces of market share with his strategy? The Wall Street Journal, which is unquestionably the marquee publication of the Murdoch empire, has retained readers and circulation for the very reason that it has historically delivered liberal and conservative news and opinion for years. So, why has that paper continued to flourish while the New York Times has been in a death spiral for years? The answer is that the Times long ago forgot the notion of intellectual integrity and fairness that are the essential elements of demonstrating respect for readers and subscribers. Most media junkies know that the Murdoch organization has far more accurate market information than Rasmussen can produce, but both organizations’ data point to a common trend. The dinosaur media is collapsing faster than anyone predicted.

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