MSNBC Is the Most Influential Network Among Liberals—And It’s Ignoring Bernie Sanders
Sanders, meanwhile, received less coverage on MSNBC than Biden or Warren. Of the three candidates, Sanders was least likely to be mentioned positively (12.9% of his mentions) and most likely to be mentioned negatively (20.7%). The remaining two-thirds of his mentions were neutral.
Sanders received no negative mentions on Maddow’s show (which had the least primary coverage of the six programs analyzed), and only a handful on O’Donnell’s, Melber’s and Hayes’ shows. Rather, 87% of negative mentions came from just two programs: Matthews’ Hardball and Williams’ 11th Hour.
Sanders was especially criticized on 11th Hour after he suggested the negative campaign coverage coming from the Washington Post—owned by billionaire Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos—was related to Sanders’ criticism of Amazon’s labor practices. Williams and a guest both took the opportunity to liken Sanders to Trump, who frequently complains about his media coverage. Williams then quoted a tweet from an anonymous online anti-Sanders troll—sent before the Bezos controversy had even begun—accusing Sanders of not working to defeat Trump in 2016. (In fact, Sanders stumped at 17 pro-Hillary Clinton events in 11 states in November 2016.)