Heading into Super Tuesday, Mitt Romney had his best week of the year in the press.
Fully 45% of the news coverage of Mitt Romney was positive, while 28% was negative-a 17 percentage point differential, according to Campaign 2012 in the Media, an ongoing effort to track campaign coverage by the Pew Research Center's Project for Excellence in Journalism. At the same time, 28% of the coverage was neutral for the week of February 27 through March 4, the period in which Romney won the Arizona and closely contested Michigan primaries and seemed to secure again his front-runner status.
Meanwhile, Rick Santorum, who came close but did not beat Romney in Michigan, saw his coverage improve over a week earlier, when he made controversial remarks about the value of college education and criticism of John F. Kennedy's speech during the 1960 presidential campaign about Catholicism and the separation of Church and State. Last week, with those remarks behind him, 38% of the coverage of Santorum was positive while 30% was negative and 32% was neutral-a differential of eight points toward the positive.
Read the full PRJ Election Report on the Pew Research Center's Project for Excellence in Journalism Web site.