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Media as Watchdogs: The Role of News Media in Electoral Competition

  • Jimmy Chan
  • Wing Suen

We present a model in which the media provide voters with information that is tainted by their own preferences, and derive an equilibrium in which media endorsements influence voting behavior. Competition for media endorsement causes political parties to adopt more centrist policies, which benefits all voters. Mass media which are more sensitive to changes in policies and which are less biased lead to greater policy convergence toward the median voter's ideal point. The presence of multiple media outlets also helps promote electoral competition.

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Paper provided by The Johns Hopkins University,Department of Economics in its series Economics Working Paper Archive with number 497.

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Date of creation: Jun 2003
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Handle: RePEc:jhu:papers:497
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  3. Larcinese, Valentino & Puglisi, Riccardo & Snyder Jr., James M., 2011. "Partisan bias in economic news: Evidence on the agenda-setting behavior of U.S. newspapers," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(9-10), pages 1178-1189, October.
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  7. Grossman, G.M. & Helpman, E., 1998. "Competing for Endorsements," Papers 09-98, Tel Aviv.
  8. Marco Battaglini, 2002. "Multiple Referrals and Multidimensional Cheap Talk," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(4), pages 1379-1401, July.
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  18. Martinelli, Cesar, 2001. " Elections with Privately Informed Parties and Voters," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 108(1-2), pages 147-67, July.
  19. David Strömberg, 2004. "Radio's Impact on Public Spending," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 119(1), pages 189-221, February.
  20. Jimmy Chan & Wing Suen, 2008. "A Spatial Theory of News Consumption and Electoral Competition," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 75(3), pages 699-728.
  21. Sendhil Mullainathan & Andrei Shleifer, 2005. "The Market for News," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(4), pages 1031-1053, September.
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  25. Baron, David P., 2006. "Persistent media bias," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(1-2), pages 1-36, January.
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