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A Study of Agenda-Setting Theory in Presidential Debates in Mexico’s 2000 Presidential Campaign
Unformatted Document Text:  2 Abstract A Study of Agenda-Setting Theory in Presidential Debates in Mexico’s 2000 Presidential Campaign The 2000 Presidential election in Mexico, won by opposition candidate Vicente Fox, ended 71 years of rule of the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI). Content analysis of television coverage of presidential debates during the Mexican election in 2000 showed that first-level and second- level agenda setting theory explains the role that the media played during that contest. Coverage of the two presidential debates was illustrative of how effective the media were in setting the agenda for discussion on issues and candidate attributes during the campaign. Videotapes of television newscats were content analyzed, as were the television debates themselves. The study replicated findings of prior studies of the agenda-setting function: the media (television news) agenda prior to the debates was highly correlated with the content of the debates themselves.Data from a panel study conducted at the time of the campaign showed a high correspondence between media content and public perceptions of issues and candidate traits. This correspondence was more evident when analyzing candidate image. Overall media coverage was centered on candidate image rather than issues; consequently, the public perceptions of candidates were also centered on image attributes rather than campaign issues.

Authors: Mercado, Antonieta., Hellweg, Susan., Dozier, David. and Hofstetter, C..
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Abstract
A Study of Agenda-Setting Theory in Presidential Debates in
Mexico’s 2000 Presidential Campaign
The 2000 Presidential election in Mexico, won by
opposition candidate Vicente Fox, ended 71 years of rule of
the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI). Content analysis
of television coverage of presidential debates during the
Mexican election in 2000 showed that first-level and second-
level agenda setting theory explains the role that the media
played during that contest. Coverage of the two presidential
debates was illustrative of how effective the media were in
setting the agenda for discussion on issues and candidate
attributes during the campaign. Videotapes of television
newscats were content analyzed, as were the television debates
themselves. The study replicated findings of prior studies of
the agenda-setting function: the media (television news)
agenda prior to the debates was highly correlated with the
content of the debates themselves.Data from a panel study
conducted at the time of the campaign showed a high
correspondence between media content and public perceptions of
issues and candidate traits. This correspondence was more
evident when analyzing candidate image. Overall media coverage
was centered on candidate image rather than issues;
consequently, the public perceptions of candidates were also
centered on image attributes rather than campaign issues.


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