- Europhile media and Eurosceptic voting: effects of news media coverage on Eurosceptic voting in the 2009 European Parliamentary elections
- Political Communication
- Volume | Issue number
- 31 | 2
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Amsterdam School of Communication Research (ASCoR)
Extant research is not very specific about when the media matter for vote choice. In this study, we test multiple theories about the influences of the media on vote choice in 21 countries. The European Parliamentary (EP) election campaign offers a unique research context to test these influences. We rely on a two-wave panel survey conducted in 21 European Union (EU) member states, asking both vote intentions before the campaign and reported actual votes (among 14,000 voters). We link these data to media content data of campaign coverage between the two waves in these countries (37,000 coded news items). We conclude that media evaluations of the EU affect voting for Eurosceptic parties. On average, the more positive the evaluations of the EU a voter is exposed to, the less likely she or he is to cast a vote for a Eurosceptic party. In addition, our findings indicate that in countries where political parties have markedly different views on EU issues, the more a voter is exposed to framing of the EU in terms of benefits derived from membership in these countries, the less likely she or he is to cast a Eurosceptic vote. This suggests that the outcome of the 2009 EP elections was influenced by how the media covered EU-related news during the campaign.
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