The Mediated Presidency: Television News and Presidential Governance

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9780742536784: The Mediated Presidency: Television News and Presidential Governance

Including late-breaking data from the Iraq occupation and the disastrous CBS News reports on Bush's Vietnam-era National Guard Service, acclaimed media scholars Stephen J. Farnsworth and S. Robert Lichter examine news coverage of military policy, economic policy, and scandals from the last four U.S. presidencies, including the current controversial administration. Using a quarter-century of content analysis data, the authors demonstrate how the White House dominates Capitol Hill on every dimension of news coverage, undermining Congress's attempt to compete as an equal branch before the public. At the same time, they show how the networks are steadily losing ground to new media outlets and suggest future paths our media mania may take.

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About the Author:

Stephen J. Farnsworth is associate professor of political science at the University of Mary Washington and a former newspaper journalist. S. Robert Lichter is professor of communication at George Mason University, where he directs the Center for Media and Public Affairs, a nonprofit, nonpartisan media research organization.

Review:

At last we have a book that details how the news media cover the presidency and how that coverage changes with the White House occupant and national conditions. This book is a must-read for anyone interested in the presidency or the media. For that matter, it's a must-read for anyone who seeks to understand contemporary American politics. (Patterson, Thomas E.)

Farnsworth and Lichter provide valuable data on the amount, tone, and sources of television news stories, raising important questions about media bias and presidential governance. (Edwards, George C. III)

This lucidly-written, comprehensive content analysis of broadcast and print media coverage of the Reagan, Clinton, and G. W. Bush presidencies is unique in its emphasis on major policy areas and on the presidents' battles for media attention. This book is a must-have source for understanding news coverage of the federal government in comparative perspective. It is timely and fills a major gap in the literature. (Doris A. Graber)

The Mediated Presidency makes a major contribution to studies of the presidency and political media. This landmark work provides a detailed analysis of television and newspaper coverage of American presidents from Ronald Reagan to the present. Making use of extensive content analysis data, Farnsworth and Lichter go beyond typical anecdotal accounts to examine the extent, tone, and content of media stories about the presidency, including scandal-driven coverage. A serious work written in a lively style that provides excellent examples spanning over a quarter century, The Mediated Presidency is recommended reading for scholars and students of politics. (Owen, Diana)

Farnsworth and Lichte offer an insightful account of the last quarter century news converage of Amercian national government. (T. Fackler Choice)

This exhaustive study of recent presidential coverage will be of value to journalists, government officials, and political scientists alike. There is abundant material here for everyone interested in the interaction of press and government. (Broder, David S.)

The Mediated Presidency will be of interest both to researchers seeking a critical survey of the U.S. media and politics and to those interested in drawing international comparisons. (Political Studies Review)

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