recent tracking of partisan news trends

Over the years, the audiences for the cable news networks have become increasingly split along partisan lines–with the sharpest split among Fox viewers.  MSNBC is split toward Democratic viewers (as is Comedy Central), but CNN is not much less favored by Democratic leaning viewers, according to reporting in today’s Times.

By 2008-9, the network audiences tilted decisively, like Fox’s. CNN viewers were more Democratic by 50.4 percent to 28.7 percent; MSNBC viewers were 53.6 percent to 27.3 percent Democratic; Headline News’ 47.3 percent to 31.4 percent Democratic; CNBC’s 46.9 percent to 32.5 percent Democratic; and Comedy Central’s 47.1 to 28.8 percent Democratic.

The question arises:  is that pattern because CNN is “Democrat friendly”, or has Fox been uniquely successful in luring away the more conservative viewers who would otherwise have watched a more mainstream, quasi-neutral outlet?


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