At least until the shocking weekend shooting of an Arizona Congresswoman dramatically altered the narrative, the prospects of political conflict from a new Congress and changes in the White House dominated last week’s news agenda.
For the week of January 3-9, coverage of the 112th Congress—with a GOP-led House—as well incoming officeholders around the country filled 21% of the newshole, according to the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence.
One related subject (the No. 3 story at 8%) involved changes in the Obama Administration, most notably the naming of former Commerce Secretary William Daley as chief of staff. Another (No. 4 at 7%) was the health care debate, with most of the coverage focused on now-postponed Republican plans to introduce a bill to repeal last year’s health care reform law. Taken together, coverage devoted largely to the political realignment in the wake of the November 2 elections accounted for more than one-third (36%) of the overall newshole last week.
Read the full report A Beltway Realignment Tops the News on the Pew Research Center's Project for Excellence in Journalism Web site.