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A Study of Agenda-Setting Theory in Presidential Debates in Mexico’s 2000 Presidential Campaign
Unformatted Document Text:  21 teacher’s strike and demonstrations in Mexico City, that took place around the time of the first debate. Hypothesis 2. This Hypothesis predicted that the higher the candidate image attribute content within the media agenda, the higher the focus on candidate image attributes within the debate. The correlation between news content and debate content in terms of candidate image attributes was positive and significant. In order to test this hypothesis, an index of candidate image attributes was developed as shown in Table 1. For the newscasts, the number of mentions of image attributes per candidate were counted. A count was also made whenever those attributes were used by one candidate or media to attack other candidate’s attributes or to emphasize personal attributes. For the debates, rebuttals that included attacks on the attributes of others, as well as self-defenses which praised the candidate’s own attributes, were considered. Table 3 shows the list of mentions of candidate image attributes during the debates. Those attributes were then combined in a single list and correlated with candidate image attributes covered by television. The results of the correlation were positive and significant for all the candidates with their attributes and for each candidate. To correlate the variables in the original data bases for television coverage and debates on candidate image, a matrix was developed. Mentions of attributes in candidate image were correlated with time spent by the candidates in the debates talking about those attributes either in themselves or in the other candidates, time was measured in seconds. Once the total mentions of the attribute in television coverage and the total time spent by the candidates mentioning the attribute in the debates was determined, those attributes for each candidate were considered as cases to correlate the two data bases (debate and television coverage) for candidate image.

Authors: Mercado, Antonieta., Hellweg, Susan., Dozier, David. and Hofstetter, C..
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21
teacher’s strike and demonstrations in Mexico City, that took
place around the time of the first debate.
Hypothesis 2. This Hypothesis predicted that the higher
the candidate image attribute content within the media agenda,
the higher the focus on candidate image attributes within the
debate. The correlation between news content and debate
content in terms of candidate image attributes was positive
and significant.
In order to test this hypothesis, an index of candidate
image attributes was developed as shown in Table 1. For the
newscasts, the number of mentions of image attributes per
candidate were counted. A count was also made whenever those
attributes were used by one candidate or media to attack other
candidate’s attributes or to emphasize personal attributes.
For the debates, rebuttals that included attacks on the
attributes of others, as well as self-defenses which praised
the candidate’s own attributes, were considered. Table 3 shows
the list of mentions of candidate image attributes during the
debates. Those attributes were then combined in a single list
and correlated with candidate image attributes covered by
television. The results of the correlation were positive and
significant for all the candidates with their attributes and
for each candidate.
To correlate the variables in the original data bases for
television coverage and debates on candidate image, a matrix
was developed. Mentions of attributes in candidate image were
correlated with time spent by the candidates in the debates
talking about those attributes either in themselves or in the
other candidates, time was measured in seconds. Once the total
mentions of the attribute in television coverage and the total
time spent by the candidates mentioning the attribute in the
debates was determined, those attributes for each candidate
were considered as cases to correlate the two data bases
(debate and television coverage) for candidate image.


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