Friday, October 03, 2008

Media coverage of third party candidates

I was shocked, USA Today actually wrote about third party candidates, in Georgia while at first you might think it was nice to see some actual news coverage for once. A few parts of the recommended article first create hope that it might actually be real coverage:
ATLANTA — One is a blunt-spoken former Georgia congressman who helped lead the drive to impeach President Clinton in 1998 and later became a strong advocate of civil liberties after the 9/11 attacks.

The other is a firebrand former Georgia congresswoman who filed articles of impeachment against President Bush and Vice President Cheney and later became an impassioned voice for victims of Hurricane Katrina.

Then we get to the typical way third party candidates are treated:

David Johnson, CEO of the public relations and public affairs agency Strategic Vision, doesn't expect Barr to exceed 3% on Nov. 4. "This race is very close," he says of the national campaign. "Republicans who might have basic difficulties with McCain, former Hillary (Rodham Clinton) supporters who might have basic difficulties with Obama, they're not going to waste a vote on a third-party candidate."

Third-party candidates usually poll better early in a campaign when voters disgruntled by major-party candidates consider voting for them, says Larry Sabato, a political scientist at the University of Virginia. "But as you approach election day, it is obvious that either the Democrat or the Republican will be elected president," he says. "At that point, people do not want to throw away their vote."

Any vote is never a throw away or a wasted vote...

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