The Corner

Study: Trump ‘Has Earned Close to $2 Billion Worth of Media Attention’

If it feels like television news has been broadcasting Trump morning, noon and night, since the race began… and that you hear about Hillary and Bernie Sanders the next most often, and that you see coverage of the other Republican candidates way less frequently than any of those three… well, your instincts are right:

The study from mediaQuant, a firm that tracks media coverage of each candidate and computes a dollar value based on advertising rates, dissected in the New York Times, concludes that the media has given Trump a media advantage the likes of which we’ve never seen before:

Mr. Trump earned $400 million worth of free media last month, about what John McCain spent on his entire 2008 presidential campaign. Paul Senatori, mediaQuant’s chief analytics officer, says that Mr. Trump “has no weakness in any of the media segments” — in other words, he is strong in every type of earned media, from television to Twitter.

Over the course of the campaign, he has earned close to $2 billion worth of media attention, about twice the all-in price of the most expensive presidential campaigns in history. It is also twice the estimated $746 million that Hillary Clinton, the next best at earning media, took in. Senator Bernie Sanders has earned more media than any of the Republicans except Mr. Trump.

A more skeptical Republican electorate would ask, “Why?” Why are television media institutions usually hostile to Republicans suddenly going ga-ga and obsessing over every word the GOP front-runner says? Why are they so eager to cover his rallies live? Why do they allow him to call in to the Sunday shows? Why do they have “town hall meetings” with softball questions? Why are his prime-time press conferences aired live and then dissected by a team of analysts?

Is it because these television producers, anchors and programming directors have suddenly come to appreciate his call for a border wall, deportation of all illegal immigrants and a ban on Muslim immigration? Or is it because they think he confirms every negative stereotype of the conservative movement and Republican Party, that he’ll get demolished in a general election, and he’ll take a lot of Congressional Republicans down with him?

Most Popular

Politics & Policy

The Other Case against Reparations

Reparations are an ethical disaster. Proceeding from a doctrine of collective guilt, they are the penalty for slavery and Jim Crow, sins of which few living Americans stand accused. An offense against common sense as well as morality, reparations would take from Bubba and give to Barack, never mind if the former ... Read More
Culture

White Cats and Black Swans

Making a film of Cats is a bold endeavor — it is a musical with no real plot, based on T. S. Eliot’s idea of child-appropriate poems, and old Tom was a strange cat indeed. Casting Idris Elba as the criminal cat Macavity seems almost inevitable — he has always made a great gangster — but I think there was ... Read More
Politics & Policy

May I See Your ID?

Identity is big these days, and probably all days: racial identity, ethnic identity, political identity, etc. Tribalism. It seems to be baked into the human cake. Only the consciously, persistently religious, or spiritual, transcend it, I suppose. (“There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor ... Read More
Health Care

The Puzzling Problem of Vaping

San Francisco -- A 29-story office building at 123 Mission Street illustrates the policy puzzles that fester because of these facts: For centuries, tobacco has been a widely used, legal consumer good that does serious and often lethal harm when used as it is intended to be used. And its harmfulness has been a ... Read More