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Businessmen, Partisans and Oligarchs: Political Control, News Production Philosophies And Partisan Bias In Mexican Television News
Unformatted Document Text:  9 Increasing electoral competition also affected broadcasting at the state level. Starting in 1989, regime leaders strategically and selectively recognized opposition party victories in state elections. During the second half of the 1990s, ongoing political reform, economic crisis, and corruption scandals resulted in a flurry of victories by both the PAN and the leftist Party of the Democratic Revolution (PRD). By late 2000, state-level governments formed a political patchwork across Mexico, with the PAN holding 10 governorships, the PRD two (plus the Federal District), and the PRI retaining the balance. This process was effectively a one-way street; in only one state, Chihuahua, has power been transferred back from the opposition to the PRI. Increasing opposition control at the state level is shown in Figure 1, below. This transition transformed the environment for TV news production in a number of ways. First, all three major political parties came to control government patronage at the state level and, beginning in 1997, large pools of public campaign funds used mostly for television advertising. Second, the private sector and society generally – as media advertisers, news consumers and voters -- took on more importance while government ad revenues declined. And third, the IFE, as well as a number of state level electoral authorities, publicly pressured media owners to comply with the concept of a citizen’s right to electoral information.

Authors: Hughes, Sallie. and Lawson, Chappell.
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9
Increasing electoral competition also affected broadcasting at the state level. Starting in
1989, regime leaders strategically and selectively recognized opposition party victories in state
elections. During the second half of the 1990s, ongoing political reform, economic crisis, and
corruption scandals resulted in a flurry of victories by both the PAN and the leftist Party of the
Democratic Revolution (PRD). By late 2000, state-level governments formed a political
patchwork across Mexico, with the PAN holding 10 governorships, the PRD two (plus the
Federal District), and the PRI retaining the balance. This process was effectively a one-way
street; in only one state, Chihuahua, has power been transferred back from the opposition to the
PRI. Increasing opposition control at the state level is shown in Figure 1, below.
This transition transformed the environment for TV news production in a number of ways.
First, all three major political parties came to control government patronage at the state level and,
beginning in 1997, large pools of public campaign funds used mostly for television advertising.
Second, the private sector and society generally – as media advertisers, news consumers and
voters -- took on more importance while government ad revenues declined. And third, the IFE,
as well as a number of state level electoral authorities, publicly pressured media owners to
comply with the concept of a citizen’s right to electoral information.


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