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Political Leaning and Coverage Sentiment: Are Conservative Newspapers More Negative Toward Women?*

Social Science Quarterly

Published online on


--- - |2+ Objectives This article examines whether newspapers’ political leaning affects coverage tone for individuals in the news and whether the gender of the person covered affects this relationship. Methods I analyze sentiment data on millions of person‐names from more than 200 major American newspapers between the years 2004 and 2009, juxtaposing them with various measurements for the political leaning of these newspapers. Results Results show mixed support for the idea that political leaning in the media affects coverage patterns for individuals in the news. While newspapers located in states that are more likely to vote for Republicans cover women in a more negative way, I find no relationship between political leaning scores and coverage sentiment for men. Conclusions The study shows mild support for the proposition that relatively liberal newspapers are more likely to cover women and women's issues in a positive way. - 'Social Science Quarterly, EarlyView. '