PublicationsSeptember 20, 2007

War of Words Over War in Iraq

General David Petraeus’ appearance on Capitol Hill last week helped turn the Iraq debate into one of the biggest talk topics of the year. The general may not have changed many minds in Congress, but he provided talk hosts on both sides of the political spectrum with plenty of ammunition.

PublicationsSeptember 17, 2007

With Petraeus as Star, Iraq Debate has its Biggest Week

The general’s appearance before Congress last week was widely expected to be a pivot point in the political brawl over Iraq war policy. The media swarmed, but the story they told may help explain why David Petraeus’s testimony seemed, for now, to cement the status quo.

PublicationsSeptember 12, 2007

The Latest News Headlines—Your Vote Counts

What would a world in which citizens set the news agenda rather than editors look like? A new PEJ study comparing user-news sites, like Digg,,and Reddit, with mainstream news outlets provides some initial answers. The snapshot suggests both a drastically different set of topics and information sources.

PublicationsSeptember 12, 2007

Talk Hosts Sound Off on Craig and Thompson

One is a longtime senator who may be driven from office by scandal. Another is a former senator who announced his intent to seek the highest office in the land. Both were target-rich environments for the talk shows last week and both took their share of lumps. This, plus Michael Savage’s memorable Pavarotti tribute.

PublicationsSeptember 10, 2007

A Message From Osama Puts Terror in the News

The political skirmishing in advance of General Petraeus’ progress report made the Iraq debate the top story last week. And Fred Thompson’s entry helped generate coverage of the 2008 Presidential race. But a new video, a major arrest in Germany, and two mysterious men in Seattle proved why terrorism is still a major newsmaker.

PublicationsSeptember 4, 2007

Fred Thompson’s Campaign Web Site Was Already in Full Swing

Now that Fred Thompson has formally announced his candidacy for President, his live campaign can begin to match the vigorous cyberspace campaign he's been running for months. In a follow-up to a July 12 report on the Web sites of the other Presidential hopefuls, PEJ finds that Thompson’s full-service site is among the most sophisticated of anyone running–even before he had declared.

PublicationsAugust 30, 2007

Anti-War Sentiment Dominates Talk Airwaves

It’s been a while since the debate over Iraq policy was the nation’s top talk show topic. But the Iraq doubters drove the suddenly re-ignited conversation on the airwaves last week. Meanwhile, the strange saga of Atlanta Falcons quarterback Michael Vick and his dog fighting operation proved a difficult topic to tackle.

PublicationsAugust 27, 2007

The V-Word Heats Up the Iraq Debate

Two different destructive storms struck the continent and even in the dog days of summer, the presidential race continued to attract significant media interest. But several factors—an intelligence report, a senatorial statement, and a presidential analogy—all combined to re-ignite the debate over U.S. policy in Iraq.

PublicationsAugust 23, 2007

Genius or Villain, Rove is a Worthy Topic for Talk Hosts

The departure of the Bush Administration’s most-polarizing adviser gave talk shows plenty to talk about last week, as hosts from the left and right assessed the White House tenure of Karl Rove. But even as the aide prepared to shuffle off to Texas, the campaign was on most hosts’ minds.

PublicationsAugust 20, 2007

Campaign for President Takes Center Stage in Coverage

In the second quarter of 2007, the presidential campaign supplanted the debate over Iraq as the No. 1 story in the media. Barack Obama overtook Hillary Clinton as the candidate getting the most attention. And Republicans began to catch up with Democrats in exposure. PEJ offers a 2nd quarter report on the media.