Today, the 4th Estate is starting a series that examines how different media covered Election 2012 on their front pages. The series will study various sourcing, sentiment and topical patterns as it relates to the media monitoring we executed during Election 2012. Today’s post explores the sourcing pattern of the Washington Post.

Washington Post Source Types: Election 2012

Chart shows the key source types in the Washington Post front page coverage of Campaign 2012 from January 1 - November 6, 2012.

Chart shows the key source types in the Washington Post front page coverage of Campaign 2012 from January 1 – November 6, 2012.

From January 1st through November 6th, partisans and former politicians had the largest VoiceShare in Washington Post coverage (26.7%). This statistical data includes members from both sides of the aisle. The GOP contenders and their staff comprised the next largest block, closely behind the Partisan group at 26.1% of the total quote count. Citizens had a healthy VoiceShare at 14.5% of the quotes, above the the overall Citizen number in our data (10.1%) but below what Gabe Pressman feels would be appropriate.

Washington Post Key Sources: Election 2012

Chart shows the key sources in the Washington Post front page coverage of Campaign 2012 from January 1 - November 6, 2012.

Chart shows the key sources in the Washington Post front page coverage of Campaign 2012 from January 1 – November 6, 2012.

The VoiceShare of President Obama and his team (spread across two source type groups – “White House Official” and “Obama Campaign Staff”) is low, even when combined. This can be partly explained as the dates of the data span both the end of the GOP primary (approximately three and a half months) in addition to the general election, but it is still striking. As seen in the key sources chart to the right, Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich had almost as much coverage as President Obama in Election 2012 coverage.