Team Clinton: The Starting Line-up of the Pro-Clinton Press Corps


The Stats

The Media's Influence:

  • 43% of the public said the press "plays the most influential role in determining which issues and events are considered important these days." 

    22% said "political leaders in Washington."

    Source: Times Mirror Center for the People and the Press, February 1994 survey of 1,207 people. 

  • 55% of journalists at national media outlets thought George Bush's 1992 campaign was "hurt" by "the way the press has covered him." 

    11% thought Bill Clinton was hurt. 

    Source: Times Mirror Center for the People & the Press,1992 poll of 267 staffers at national press organizations.

White House reporters vote Democratic:

  • 9 White House correspondents surveyed voted for Clinton in 1992; 2 for George Bush 

  • 12 for Michael Dukakis in 1988; one for Bush

  • 10 for Walter Mondale in 1984; zero for Ronald Reagan

  • 8 for Jimmy Carter in 1980; two for Reagan

    Source: U.S. News & World Report White House reporter Kenneth Walsh in a personal survey for his 1996 book, Feeding the Beast.

Reporters voted overwhelmingly for Clinton, call themselves liberal and had little respect for the Contract with America:

  • 89% of Washington reporters voted for Bill Clinton in 1992. 

    7% voted for George Bush in 1992.

  • 61% called themselves "liberal" or "moderate to liberal." 

    9% "conservative" or "moderate to conservative."

  • 50% said they are Democrats. 

    4% are Republicans.

  • 59% called the Contract with America "an election year campaign ploy." 

    3% thought it was "a serious reform proposal."

    Source: Roper Center poll for the Freedom Forum of 139 Washington bureau chiefs and congressional correspondents, released April 1996.

Journalists don't think the GOP Congress got negative treatment, and believe Clinton's achievements deserved more attention:

  • 81% of reporters didn't think coverage of the Republican Congress has been "too cynical, too negative and has nitpicked too much." 

    19% agreed.

  • 48% of national media reporters believed the media have "given too little" coverage to "the achievements of the Clinton administration." 

    2% said too much. 

    49% thought about right.

    Source: Times Mirror Center for the People & the Press, May 1995 survey of 248 members of the national media.