public's attitude on fundraising

A. C. Szul mack97 at EROLS.COM
Wed Oct 22 21:02:10 MDT 1997

Media Research Center CyberAlert
Wednesday, October 22, 1997 (Vol. Two; No. 169)

Fundraising Bores Public

CBS News discovered that when it comes to the fundraising
scandal, Americans are "worried it's getting so much attention."

    Sunday's CBS Evening News featured a story on how people
outside of Washington, DC don't care about the fundraising scandal.
It's the third of this kind of story I've noticed over the past
couple of weeks which fit into the "media circle." Ignore many
scandal developments, slant the little coverage offered toward a
"they all do it" theme while portraying the hearings as a political
game, not a serious inquiry. Then report that the public doesn't
care and when asked about the minimal level of coverage point to
the lack of public interest.

    On the October 19 CBS Evening News reporter Sharyl Attkisson
ventured all the way out to a DC suburb. As transcribed by MRC news
analyst Steve Kaminski, she asked:
    "How is the whole issue of campaign finance reform playing
outside of Washington, D.C.? Have politicians really been able to
make the voters care? Families enjoying a pumpkin festival in
Centreville, Virginia, 45 minutes from the Capital, seem far
removed from the squabbles. Is there anyone in this group here that
thinks campaign finance reform is being overplayed? Misunderstood?"
    Man: "I don't even think they should be focusing on it at all."
    Woman: "The politicians are saying so much and the media is
listening to them where there's a lot more other issues they should
be listening to."
    Attkisson: "Issues like health care and education for their
children. Some are concerned about fundraising, but are also
worried it's getting so much attention."
    Man: "Sometimes it's in excess, but I think that there's too
much said about it."
    Attkisson: "But one view is clear, even people who want
campaign abuses investigated would be happier if Congress spent
more time on other things, things they see as more important to
their families and their future."

    Let's hope these "average citizens" stick to pumpkin carving
and leave politics to those who have a clue about what's going on.

    The other story stories with the public doesn't care theme
appeared in newspapers. Here are the headlines:

    From the October 10 New York Times: "The Buzz in the Capital
Brings a Yawn in Peoria."

    From the October 17 USA Today: "Where Fundraising Flap Falls
Flat -- In Missouri, 1,000 miles from the nation's capital, the
clamor over political fundraising generally is drawing little
interest or concern."

    And at least one media star agrees with the public view, at
least the assessment found by reporters that they all do it. On
this past weekend's Tim Russert show on CNBC, CBS 60 Minutes
correspondent Lesley Stahl suggested the scandals are not hurting
Clinton's popularity rating because people see that "he's a great
father and he's a compromiser. And the Republicans like to say he
has no sense of direction. But we see it as kind of prudent. You
know we like it. He's not taking us in any wild directions."

   Russert asked, as transcribed by MRC analyst Geoffrey Dickens:
"And in terms of campaign fundraising is the view across the
country, 'They all do it?'"
   Stahl agreed with the public assessment: "They all do it. Well
in a sense it's true. In a sense it's true."


RE public's attitude on fundraising.  Who are we to believe - the media
slants to their liking, and the politicos get away with it all.


More information about the Rushtalk mailing list