A new Pew survey about the Trayvon Martin case shows a stark racial and political divide on the perceptions of the story and the way the media’s covered it. A majority of Republicans and white Americans feel there has been too much coverage of the case. Meanwhile, African-Americans are following the case more closely than their white peers:
The Trayvon Martin shooting is the public’s top story for the second consecutive week. But interest in the teenager’s death is deeply divided along partisan, as well as racial, lines. These differences also are apparent in reactions to news coverage of the incident: Far more Republicans (56%) than Democrats (25%) say there has been too much coverage of Martin’s death.
The latest weekly News Interest Index survey, conducted March 29-April 1 among 1,000 adults, finds that 30% say they followed Martin’s death more closely than any other story, little changed from a week ago (25%). The Supreme Court hearings on the 2010 health care law are a distant second; 15% say they followed the Court hearings most closely.
A separate analysis by the Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism (PEJ) found that the Court’s health care hearings accounted for 19% of news coverage. Slightly less coverage (18% of the newshole) was devoted to news about Trayvon Martin.
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