The United States is an extremely separated country when politics comes to concentration. About half of all Americans vote for Republicans, while the other half are associated with Democrats. Stuart Kallen, author of childrens books as well as Native American and history books, explains, “This blatant political divide was distinctly demonstrated in the 2000 presidential election, which was a statistical draw. Democrat Al Gore achieved a higher percentage of the popular vote, while his competitor, Republican George W. Bush, was given greater electoral votes and was awarded the presidency after a lengthy battle in state and federal courts.”
During the election and its outcome, the media were harshly criticized. Kallen states, “Republicans said the liberal bias of newspaper reporters and television helped Gore practically win. Democrats incriminated that a conservative bias on specific cable news programs and radio talk shows led to Bush's victory.” Also, many criticized the media for covering the campaign as a horse race. The media was said to be keeping tally of who was ahead and who was behind in the polls while avoiding significant issues.
While the 2000 presidential election, as well as any other presidential election, was particularly debatable, the topic of media bias has long been a subject of impassioned argument. Radio, magazines, newspaper and television have customarily played vital roles in America's democratic association, educating the public about politics and distributing news. Maybe no other organizations have been given a larger responsibility. The thought of a unbiased press that gives even coverage to both sides of an issue has been a foundation of journalism since World War II. As media critic Tim Rutten writes in the Los Angeles Times, "Intellectual rigor and emotional self-discipline enable journalists to gather and report facts with an impartiality that—though sometimes imperfect—is good enough to serve the public's interest.”
Kallen demonstrates, “Conservatives see a enduring liberal bias displayed by newscasters such as ABC's Peter Jennings CBS's Dan Rather.” Telling us that these newscasters are guilty of liberal bias. Kallen quotes Tim Graham and Rich Noyes as they write about Jennings on the Media Research Center Web site: "During the last twenty years, Jennings' liberal tilt has been obvious—the ABC anchorman has pushed for European-style welfare programs, denigrated tax cuts, castigated Republicans as intolerant, scoffed at suggestions that Soviet communism was a threat and pushed the arguments of left-wing antiwar activists during [2003's] successful war to oust Saddam Hussein." This claimed liberal bias is also noticed in the country's most prevalent newspapers and magazines, such as the, New York Times, Washington Post, and Newsweek. These media outlets are seen as supporting gay rights, abortion rights, environmental restrictions on industry, and other issues favored by liberals. (Kallen)
Statistics show that 45% percent of Americans believe the news media in this country are too liberal, while only 14% say the news media are too conservative (Kallen). Robert J. Barro, an America classical macroeconomist and the Paul M. Warburg Professor of Economics at Harvard University, evaluates that, “the media in terms of liberal bias. On a scale of 0 to 100, with 100 being most liberal and 0 being most conservative, the Wall Street Journal ranks highest, with a score of 85”
The issue of media bias will probably never be settled as long as people have diverse opinions. The mainstream media will continue to play the middle between liberal and conservative critics, trying to please advertisers while offending as few audience members as possible. The new media will target specific audiences who want their own political opinions reinforced, often simply and loudly. Those hoping for in-depth explorations of complicated issues will peruse magazines, newspaper articles, and books