The Fox News Effect: Media Bias and Voting
AbstractDoes media bias affect voting? We analyze the entry of Fox News in cable markets and its impact on voting. Between October 1996 and November 2000, the conservative Fox News Channel was introduced in the cable programming of 20 percent of U. S. towns. Fox News availability in 2000 appears to be largely idiosyncratic, conditional on a set of controls. Using a data set of voting data for 9,256 towns, we investigate if Republicans gained vote share in towns where Fox News entered the cable market by the year 2000. We find a significant effect of the introduction of Fox News on the vote share in Presidential elections between 1996 and 2000. Republicans gained 0.4 to 0.7 percentage points in the towns that broadcast Fox News. Fox News also affected voter turnout and the Republican vote share in the Senate. Our estimates imply that Fox News convinced 3 to 28 percent of its viewers to vote Republican, depending on the audience measure. The Fox News effect could be a temporary learning effect for rational voters, or a permanent effect for nonrational voters subject to persuasion. Copyright by the President and Fellows of Harvard College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
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Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by MIT Press in its journal The Quarterly Journal of Economics.
Volume (Year): 122 (2007)
Issue (Month): 3 (08)
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Web page: http://mitpress.mit.edu/journals/
Other versions of this item:
- Stefano DellaVigna & Ethan Kaplan, 2006. "The Fox News Effect: Media Bias and Voting," NBER Working Papers 12169, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- DellaVigna, Stefano & Kaplan, Ethan, 2006. "The Fox News Effect: Media Bias and Voting," Seminar Papers 748, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.
- C53 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric Modeling - - - Forecasting and Prediction Models; Simulation Methods
- H10 - Public Economics - - Structure and Scope of Government - - - General
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Blog mentionsAs found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
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