• AEA in the news
  • September 5, 2017

Cable news impact on the political divide

A new study says that watching a few minutes more of right-leaning Fox News makes viewers more likely to vote Republican.


The Washington Post and Vox featured a paper that appears in the September issue of The American Economic Review about bias in cable news. The study by Gregory J. Martin and Ali Yurukoglu examined the persuasive effects of slanted news, such as the right-leaning Fox News, on viewer voting preferences. The authors estimated that watching Fox News by an additional 2.5 minutes per week increased the vote share of the Republican presidential candidate by 0.3 percentage points. Also, the channel position affects viewers’ exposure — the earlier a Fox channel appears in the channel order, the more likely it is that viewers will spend time watching it.