President Bush got such negative TV coverage during the month of January — and Democrats got so much favorable attention — that one wonders why Bush's polls aren't worse than they are.
Bush's approval ratings are now down to the low 50s and he loses in head-to-head matchups with both the Democratic frontrunner, Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., and his only rival, Sen. John Edwards, D-N.C.
But, considering where he's at after the pummeling he's taken, Bush should rebound when he starts fighting back in earnest and when (as seems likely) the economy picks up.
Meantime, results from the Wisconsin primary show that Democrats are less than entirely enthusiastic about Kerry. The Bush campaign may have stirred up doubts about Kerry, but it certainly doesn't want to help Edwards, who might be a stronger general election candidate than Kerry.
Bush's depressed polls can be explained by what the public has heard over the past month. A study by the Center for Media and Public Affairs shows that references to Bush in January were more than two-thirds negative on the three broadcast network evening newscasts, while references to Democratic presidential candidates were 71 percent positive.
Wednesday, February 25, 2004
Mort Kondracke points out the contrast between the media coverage of Bush and the Democrats in the past two months.
Posted by Betsy Newmark at 10:39 AM