News Interest Index: Wide Racial, Partisan Gaps in Reactions to Trayvon Martin Coverage

Apr 03, 2012

The Trayvon Martin shooting is the public’s top story for the second consecutive week. But interest in the teenager’s death is deeply divided along partisan, as well as racial, lines. These differences also are apparent in reactions to news coverage of the incident: Far more Republicans (56%) than Democrats (25%) say there has been too much coverage of Martin’s death.

The latest weekly News Interest Index survey, conducted March 29-April 1 among 1,000 adults, finds that 30% say they followed Martin’s death more closely than any other story, little changed from a week ago (25%). The Supreme Court hearings on the 2010 health care law are a distant second; 15% say they followed the Court hearings most closely.

A separate analysis by the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism (PEJ) found that the Court’s health care hearings accounted for 19% of news coverage. Slightly less coverage (18% of the newshole) was devoted to news about Trayvon Martin.

Read the full report, Wide Racial, Partisan Gaps in Reactions to Trayvon Martin Coverage, on the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press website.

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