Pressed into Party Support? Media Influence on Partisan Attitudes during the 2005 UK General Election Campaign

Heinz Brandenburg, Marcel van Egmond

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

7 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This study reassesses the ability of the mass media to directly influence voter opinions. By combining data on media content with individuals’ assessments of political parties during the 2005 UK election campaign, we are able to test newspapers’ persuasive influence in a way previously considered a ‘virtual impossibility’.
Utilizing repeated measures from the 2005 BES campaign panel, multilevel regression analysis reveals significant impact of partisan slant not just on the evaluation of the party mentioned but also on evaluations of its competitor(s). The strongest evidence of direct media persuasion is provided by the finding that variation in slant over the campaign drives how undecided voters evaluate the incumbent government party, even when controlling for a newspaper’s average partisan slant.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)441-463
Number of pages23
JournalBritish Journal of Political Science
Volume42
Issue number2
Early online date16 Dec 2011
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 29 Feb 2012

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