[guest post by Dana]
With campaign season officially underway, GOP contenders are already facing the MSM in all its “gotcha question” glory. As such, here is an interesting look at a recent study out of the School of Journalism, Indiana University.
The study did not reveal any surprises, instead reflecting what most readers have known for a long time (if not the specific numbers): only 7% of American journalists identify as Republicans. And while most journalists see themselves as independents, “among those who choose a side, Democrats outnumber Republicans four to one.”
From the study:
Compared with 2002, the percentage of full-time U.S. journalists who claim to be Democrats has dropped 8 percentage points in 2013 to about 28 percent, moving this figure closer to the overall population percentage of 30 percent, according to a December 12-15, 2013, ABC News/Washington Post national poll of 1,005 adults. This is the lowest percentage of journalists saying they are Democrats since 1971. An even larger drop was observed among journalists who said they were Republicans in 2013 (7.1 percent) than in 2002 (18 percent), but the 2013 figure is still notably lower than the percentage of U.S. adults who identified with the Republican Party (24 percent according to the poll mentioned above).
Given that, journalist Michael Walsh provides an astute clarification of “independent” self-identification and “independent” voter:
a) “independent” is how most journalists I know and have known would describe themselves and b) in the ballot box, they will overwhelmingly vote for the Democrat.
And since we’re talking journalism, media, newspapers…politics…
The Los Angeles Times announced today that Obama aide Johanna Maska has been hired to be the vice president of marketing and communications. Maska spent eight years working for Obama and will make the transition from White House to LAT on May 1.
From the publisher:
“Johanna is uniquely skilled to help us bring the stories in the L.A. Times and the story of the L.A. Times to the world,” said Austin Beutner, publisher and chief executive of The Times.
From the White House:
“Over the last eight years, Johanna has traveled around the globe with the President, his team and the White House press corps executing events that have helped this President to deliver a compelling message to the American people,” said White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest.
“She thrives when the pressure and the stakes are high, and it’s why she’ll have so much to offer as she confronts a new set of challenges with her new team.”
Maska spoke about joining the LAT and the importance of an independent press:
Traveling with the President, I saw what countries without a vibrant free press look like. At our first Summit of Americas, in Trinidad and Tobago, I watched Hugo Chavez lead a pack of paparazzi into a private setting so that he could shape his own image. At another summit, in L’Aquila, Italy I saw Muammar Gaddafi driving in an electric car with his own handlers, while media swarmed him — but never got an answer to a question.
Without a robust press pushing the boundaries of power, absolute power will corrupt absolutely. And that is precisely why we need organizations like the LA Times to survive.
I love technology: how a brave bystander can take video of injustice, how we can all take part in a dialogue online with our leaders, and how we can all communicate directly.
Also, Maska is married to a reporter for the Associated Press.