NPR’s Morning Edition program focused almost a quarter of its coverage on the the Policy issue of the economy. This was a very different coverage pattern than that of All Things Considered, which focused on the campaign issues of strategy and character.
Election coverage on NPR’s Morning Edition in the past two months has focused on the issue of the economy. Almost one-quarter (24%) of the statements in radio segments on the election were about the economy. Morning Edition is a hard facts type of news source with shorter segments than All Things Considered. Morning Edition often amplifies the statements of the candidates and campaign officials more than other newsmakers. Over one-third (36%) of statements on Morning Edition’s election coverage came from Mitt Romney, Barack Obama or one of their staffers in the past two months. As these newsmakers have been projecting more discussion on the economy, the pattern fits that Economy is the most amplified topic on the program.
Meanwhile, NPR’s All Things Considered, has focused only 14% of its election coverage on the issue of the economy. Campaign issues such as strategy and candidate character have been discussed more frequently. It is an interesting dichotomy that while All Things Considered employs a deeper approach to its coverage than Morning Edition, the coverage focus is on, arguably, less important topics to the country. Almost half (45%) of the statements of the program’s election coverage came from journalists, academics, analysts and partisans unaffiliated with a campaign. These newsmaker types have discussed in depth the strategies and maneuvers of the campaigns and the candidates. While Morning Edition serves as an amplification of the messages of the respective campaigns, All Things Considered tries to provide more third party validated analysis and commentary.