The weakening economy was the biggest story in the media in 2011, accounting for one-fifth of the entire newshole, a jump from the year before. The race for the presidency accounted for about half that much, 9%.
Towards the end of 2011 and into 2012, attention to those two issues crossed.
The campaign overtook the economy in November (economy coverage accounted for 18% and campaign accounted for 20%), when allegations about sexual harassment by Herman Cain became a major subject. Coverage of the campaign has only gained steam since. Thus far in 2012, the campaign has accounted for nearly half, 46%, of the newshole according to PEJ’s News Coverage Index.
Read the full report, Economy Fades as Election Intensifies, on the Pew Research Center's Project for Excellence in Journalism Web site.