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United States Presidential Election Campaign Media Analysis, 1996

Resource Type
Dataset : survey data
  • Just, Marion R.
  • Crigler, Ann N.
  • Buhr, Tami
Other Title
  • Archival Version (Subtitle)
Publication Date
Free Keywords
campaign strategies; candidates; media coverage; media use; political campaigns; presidential elections
  • Abstract

    This study consists of a content analysis of 12 different campaign information sources from the 1996 presidential election campaign. Each communication outlet (or medium) was analyzed using a consistent set of guidelines so the various kinds of media could be rigorously compared. The media include traditional news outlets, such as network and cable television news (CBS, ABC, NBC, CNN), news magazines (TIME magazine), newspapers (the NEW YORK TIMES and various other local newspapers), and political advertising, speeches, and debates. Other analyzed media include newer forms of campaign media, such as televised candidate interviews, candidate Web sites, and free televised candidate spots. Areas of investigation include type of news story, partisan focus of the story, control of the story, substantive focus of the story, election topics covered, sources of the story, issues revised, policy debate, reporting of the candidates' records and proposals, discussions of candidates' general political conduct, their personal background, and associates of the presidential candidates, and the political "horse race," in which reporters and sources assess the political strength or viability of each of the candidates. The information is presented in three types of files for each medium. The first file type is the Story-Level Data file, which is the master data file. It contains all of the variables coded, and the unit of analysis is the story, interview, ad, speech, etc. The second file type is the Multiple Story-Level Data file. In this file, topics span a number of units. For example, all issues mentioned in a "story" are coded, and each issue is considered a unit. This file contains the following coding blocks: polls, interview guests, topics, sources, issues, candidates' records, proposals and issue stands, sound bites, mentions of election-year players, correcting the record, and state contests/voting blocs. The third file type is the Statement-Level Data file. This file contains the following coding blocks: policy debate, evaluations of 1996 candidates, and horse race assessments. The unit of analysis in this file is the "statement," and each story is comprised of multiple statements. This file groups the statements by story and orders them by their placement within the story.
  • Table of Contents


    • DS0: Study-Level Files
    • DS1: Candidate Ads, Multiple Story-Level Data
    • DS2: Candidate Ads, Statement-Level Data
    • DS3: Candidate Ads, Story-Level Data
    • DS4: CNN, Multiple Story-Level Data
    • DS5: CNN, Statement-Level Data
    • DS6: CNN, Story-Level Data
    • DS7: Convention Speeches, Multiple Story-Level Data
    • DS8: Convention Speeches, Statement-Level Data
    • DS9: Convention Speeches, Story-Level Data
    • DS10: Candidate Debates, Multiple Story-Level Data
    • DS11: Candidate Debates, Statement-Level Data
    • DS12: Candidate Debates, Story-Level Data
    • DS13: Free Airtime Ads, Multiple Story-Level Data
    • DS14: Free Airtime Ads, Statement-Level Data
    • DS15: Free Airtime Ads, Story-Level Data
    • DS16: Televised Candidate Interviews, Multiple Story-Level Data
    • DS17: Televised Candidate Interviews, Statement-Level Data
    • DS18: Televised Candidate Interviews, Story-Level Data
    • DS19: Composite Local Newspaper, Multiple Story-Level Data
    • DS20: Composite Local Newspaper, Statement-Level Data
    • DS21: Composite Local Newspaper, Story-Level Data
    • DS22: Network News, Multiple Story-Level Data
    • DS23: Network News, Statement-Level Data
    • DS24: Network News, Story-Level Data
    • DS25: NEW YORK TIMES, Multiple Story-Level Data
    • DS26: NEW YORK TIMES, Statement-Level Data
    • DS27: NEW YORK TIMES, Story-Level Data
    • DS28: Candidate Campaign Trail Speeches, Multiple Story-Level Data
    • DS29: Candidate Campaign Trail Speeches, Statement-Level Data
    • DS30: Candidate Campaign Trail Speeches, Story-Level Data
    • DS31: TIME Magazine, Multiple Story-Level Data
    • DS32: TIME Magazine, Statement-Level Data
    • DS33: TIME Magazine, Story-Level Data
    • DS34: Candidates' Web Sites, Multiple Story-Level Data
    • DS35: Candidates' Web Sites, Statement-Level Data
    • DS36: Candidates' Web Sites, Story-Level Data
Temporal Coverage
  • 1996-01-01 / 1996-11-04
    Time period: 1996-01-01--1996-11-04
Geographic Coverage
  • United States
Collection Mode
  • (1) The data are provided as an SPSS portable file. (2) This collection has not been processed by ICPSR staff. ICPSR is distributing the data and documentation for this collection in essentially the same form in which they were received. When appropriate, documentation has been converted to Portable Document Format (PDF), and data files have been converted to non-platform-specific formats. (3) The codebook is provided by ICPSR as a Portable Document Format (PDF) file. The PDF file format was developed by Adobe Systems Incorporated and can be accessed using PDF reader software, such as the Adobe Acrobat Reader. Information on how to obtain a copy of the Acrobat Reader is provided on the ICPSR Web site.

2006-01-12 All files were removed from dataset 37 and flagged as study-level files, so that they will accompany all downloads.
This version of the study is no longer available on the web. If you need to acquire this version of the data, you have to contact ICPSR User Support (
Alternative Identifiers
  • 3139 (Type: ICPSR Study Number)
  • Is previous version of
    DOI: 10.3886/ICPSR03139.v1
  • Lichter, S.R.. A plague on both parties: Substance and fairness in TV election news. Harvard International Journal of Press/Politics.6, (3), 8-30.2001.
    • ID: 10.1177/108118001129172206 (DOI)

Update Metadata: 2015-08-05 | Issue Number: 6 | Registration Date: 2015-06-15

Just, Marion R.; Crigler, Ann N.; Buhr, Tami (2001): United States Presidential Election Campaign Media Analysis, 1996. Archival Version. Version: v0. ICPSR - Interuniversity Consortium for Political and Social Research. Dataset.