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The News Coverage of the 2004 European Parliamentary Election Campaign in 25 Countries


  • Claes H. de Vreese

    (University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands)

  • Susan A. Banducci

    (University of Exeter, UK)

  • Holli A. Semetko

    (Emory University, USA)

  • Hajo G. Boomgaarden

    (University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands)


This article analyses the news coverage of the 2004 European parliamentary elections in all 25 member states of the European Union (EU). It provides a unique pan-European overview of the campaign coverage based on an analysis of three national newspapers and two television newscasts in the two weeks leading up to the elections. On average, the elections were more visible in the 10 new member states than in the 15 old EU member states. The political personalities and institutional actors featured in news stories about the elections were generally national political actors and not EU actors. When evaluative, the news in the old EU-15 was generally negative towards the EU, whereas in the new countries a mixed pattern was found. The findings of the study are discussed in the light of the literature on the EU’s legitimacy and communication deficit.

Suggested Citation

  • Claes H. de Vreese & Susan A. Banducci & Holli A. Semetko & Hajo G. Boomgaarden, 2006. "The News Coverage of the 2004 European Parliamentary Election Campaign in 25 Countries," European Union Politics, , vol. 7(4), pages 477-504, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:sae:eeupol:v:7:y:2006:i:4:p:477-504

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    Cited by:

    1. Florian Oberhuber, 2007. "Legitimating the European Union: The Contested Meanings of an EU Constitution," EUI-RSCAS Working Papers 25, European University Institute (EUI), Robert Schuman Centre of Advanced Studies (RSCAS).
    2. Katjana Gattermann & Claes De Vreese & Wouter van der Brug, 2016. "Evaluations of the Spitzenkandidaten: The Role of Information and News Exposure in Citizens’ Preference Formation," Politics and Governance, Cogitatio Press, vol. 4(1), pages 37-54.
    3. Nadia Fiorino & Nicola Pontarollo & Roberto Ricciuti, 2016. "Voter Turnout in European Parliament Elections: A Spatial Analysis," CESifo Working Paper Series 5910, CESifo Group Munich.
    4. Claes de Vreese & Rachid Azrout & Judith Moeller, 2016. "Cross Road Elections: Change in EU Performance Evaluations during the European Parliament Elections 2014," Politics and Governance, Cogitatio Press, vol. 4(1), pages 69-82.
    5. Claes H. De Vreese & Anna Kandyla, 2009. "News Framing and Public Support for a Common Foreign and Security Policy," Journal of Common Market Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47, pages 453-481, June.
    6. Heidi Schulze, 2016. "The Spitzenkandidaten in the European Parliament Election Campaign Coverage 2014 in Germany, France, and the United Kingdom," Politics and Governance, Cogitatio Press, vol. 4(1), pages 23-36.


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