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Newscasters View of the President: Can the Representation of the President Influence Voter Decision?

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Ceasia Moore

Professor Mcgrath

Journalism 100 T Th 9:35am-11am

17 November 2018

Newscasters view of the president: Can the representation of the president influence voter decision?

The four roles of the media in society include the social, economic, persuasion, and informational role. These roles make an impact on the way the population sees society as a whole through the lens of the media. All of these particular roles have impacted the 2018 election for house and senate. The way newscasters have portrayed the president in this upcoming election is a topic that is intriguing. The election that took place on November 6, 2018 consisted of the re-election of the House of Representatives and Senate of each state. The global economy is separated into two parties: republicans and democrats,and with the president being a republican, he has the power to influence voter decision. The direction chosen by voters is based solely on the representation of the president in a negative or positive manner. Since Donald Trump's race to presidency, society can see that he is a person that holds power and has proven that he can get things done for the benefit of this country. According to Pew research, views of the president were a major factor in the outcome of the populations vote. In September, Pew Research Center found that 60% of the majority registered voters viewed their vote as either for or against Donald Trump. Furthermore, this furthers the assumption that the representation of the president has an influence on voting. The election coverage through news media focused heavily on the impact that the president had on the election and whether he could influence voter decision a certain way.

Furthermore, given this knowledge, I conducted a study in which I determined the same claim. Over the span of three days, for thirty minutes each, I analyzed Fox News’ “The Fox Five” and MSNBC News “ AM Joy Reid Special.” The Fox five news cast was hosted by Kimberly Guilfoyle, Eric Bolling, Dana Perino, Greg Gutfeld, Juan Williams, Jesse Walters, Bob Beckel, and Geraldo Rivera. MSNBC on the other hand utilized Joy Reid with other special guests. Fox had a conservative approach while MSNBC was liberal. By 2015, Fox had a substantial amount of viewers compared to MSNBC news, with their numbers upto a total of about 65,000 not including desktop and mobile users, while MSNBC having only 7,028 digital users of the population. Looking at the numbers, it is wise to say that Fox has a bigger influence over the population than MSNBC. To determine my claim that media representation of the president impact voters a certain way, I measured the amount of negative and positive things said about the president and republican party. If the remarks that were said about Trump were uplifting, spoke of improvements, and was said with a smile, then I concluded the representation was positive; however, if the remarks made were degrading or biased, then I concluded the representation was negative.

While analyzing the coverage, I found that FOX news was neutral in the representation of the democrats and republicans but they spoke very highly of Trump. With the research conducted, the number of remarks made overall that were negative and positive came to a total of 12 each. These numbers were broken down even further by each party. The democratic party was calculated to a total 3 positive and 7 negative remarks while the republican party’s total came to 8 positive and 3 negative remarks. Six out of the 8 positive remarks made for the republican party referenced Trump. Fox newscasters noted that Trump had too many good things about him and that his connection with the people is why the republicans would win back the house and senate. People are moved by actions that get things done versus words just being spoken to them; therefore, a comparison was made to former president Barack Obama. Obama made promises on several occasions during his campaign running for president in 2008 to work out a deal with the NAFTA trade agreement but ceased to get that done. According to Pew Research Center, an analysis found that Obama received far more negative coverage than positive on Fox news channel. In the final stretch of his campaign, nearly half (46%) of Obama's coverage was negative, while only 6% was shown in a positive tone. On the other hand, Trump made the same promise in his campaign and now we have a new trade deal that is negotiated. “It was very bad for the democrats when trump entered the representing for the republican party,” said FOX news, who also claimed, “He has an emotional bond with the people and his policies are highly effective.”

On the contrary, MSNBC took a liberal approach to my claim. This newschannel was specifically fond of the democratic party while having nothing nice to say about Trump. After MSNBC research was analyzed, my tally was substantially greater in positive remarks made about the democratic party. The amount of positive remarks made towards the republican party came to a total of 1 while negative remarks included 3. On the other hand, numbers for the democratic party consisted of 4 positive and no negative. Overall the 5 positive remarks and 5 negative remarks were made. Democrat candidate Stacey Abrams was portrayed as changing what leadership looked like by creating a roadmap for the democratic party. She is the “transformation that we had been waiting for,” said MSNBC news. MSNBC news made it a point to be neutral about the representation of both candidates for senator in Georgia by letting the audience know that both were great candidates. The neutrality of each party did not stop the newscasters from degrading the image of Donald Trump. Trump was portrayed as a hypocrite and liar through the



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