Economy, Afghanistan Top News Interest, Coverage
Americans focused most closely last week on news about the nation’s struggling economy and President Obama’s plans to draw down U.S. troops in Afghanistan, two stories that also topped news coverage last week.
Economy, Weiner Top Public’s News Interests
Mitt Romney is clearly the candidate the public says they are hearing the most news about, while mentions of Sarah Palin have plummeted over the past two weeks.
Public Focused on Economy, Media on Weiner Scandal
Solid majorities say news organizations have given too much coverage to the Weiner photo scandal (63%) and to Sarah Palin’s bus tour of historic sites (58%).
Number Hearing “Mostly Bad” Economic News Highest Since March 2009
Not since March 2009 have so many Americans been hearing mostly bad news about the nation’s economy. Romney and Palin have become the most visible GOP presidential candidates.
Public Closely Follows Midwest Storms
The devastating tornadoes that struck Missouri last week dominated the public’s news interest. Also, three-quarters say they heard at least a little about the end of Oprah’s talk show.
Still Talking About bin Laden’s Death
While interest and coverage has waned, the bin Laden killing is by far the public’s most talked about news event. Also, the 2012 campaign continues to get only modest attention, but Newt Gingrich’s visibility has risen substantially.
Death of bin Laden: More Coverage than Interest
While the bin Laden’s death attracted a near-record amount of news coverage, public interest has been comparatively modest. In fact, four-in-ten say the story has received too much media attention.
Too Much Coverage: Birth Certificate, Royal Wedding
Majorities of Americans say news organizations focused too much last week on both the royal wedding in England and the release of the long-form version of Barack Obama’s birth certificate.
Modest American Interest in Royal Wedding
The economy and deadly storms far outpaced U.S. interest in the coming nuptials in Great Britain and nearly two-thirds call wedding coverage excessive.
Trump Has Highest Profile Among Possible GOP Contenders
Among Republicans, 39% name Trump as the most visible presidential candidate — more than all other possible GOP candidates combined. A majority of Americans, however, could not name anyone when asked which GOP candidate they have been hearing the most about.