Yesterday, Politico posted an extraordinarily long and boring (at least for the Internet, anyway) analysis of media bias titled “Why McCain is getting hosed in the press“:
The Project for Excellence in Journalism’s researchers found that John McCain, over the six weeks since the Republican convention, got four times as many negative stories as positive ones. The study found six out of 10 McCain stories were negative.
What’s more, Obama had more than twice as many positive stories (36 percent) as McCain — and just half the percentage of negative (29 percent).
You call that balanced?
Here’s the chart of media bias they’re citing:
Politico, almost with a sense of shame and needing to explain themselves, then goes to great lengths to lay out and analyze the possible reasons for this. But I’ll save you five minutes. Here’s the short and simple reason why the media is biased against McCain:
Because his campaign sucks. And both he and Sarah Palin are borderline awful presidential candidates– a fact, I’m guessing, that many Republicans will heartily agree with on November 5th.
The truth is the McCain campaign has had two really good days since August: the day they announced Palin for VP and the day Palin gave her RNC speech. Every day other than those two has varied between mediocre and disasterous. There just hasn’t been that much good news to report.
McCain’s two-week response to the economic crisis was a mess, Palin’s train wreck interviews have dominated discussion for days at a time, they both somehow managed to lose every single post-debate poll and focus group that I saw, they’ve been down in the national polls almost every single day (the state-by-state electoral college situation is even worse for them), their campaign took on a particularly ugly negative focus for a solid three weeks which elicited some likewise ugly responses from supporters, and Elizabeth Hasselbeck on the stump is like a shrill, annoying, spoiled, uninspiring, bit….. ter version of Oprah. Meanwhile, Obama is attracting record crowds, raising unprecedented funds, drawing significant support from well-known conservatives, running one of the smoothest campaigns ever, and enjoying a steady near-double-digit lead in the polls.
I bet if you did a chart of media bias last year, comparing coverage of the New England Patriots (pre-Super Bowl collapse) versus the Oakland Raiders, it’d look similar to that picture above. Winners get positive fluff pieces– like the humanitarian work of Randy Moss, the inspiration of Tedy Bruschi’s comeback, and the hotness of Tom Brady’s girlfriend– while losers get in-depth analysis of what’s going wrong, who said what behind whose back, and who needs to be or is about to be fired. Right now, the Obama campaign is the 2007 Patriots. Even if they manage to blow the Super Bowl– which would no doubt lead to a swift, 180-degree media backlash– it doesn’t matter. ‘Cause the Raiders didn’t even make the playoffs.