Michelle Obama getting more negative coverage than Cindy McCain?

June 18, 2008

WASHINGTON – Americans are hearing a lot more about Michelle Obama than Cindy McCain, but the news they get about the Democratic presidential candidate’s wife is far more negative than what they hear about thertr209pf.jpg spouse of the Republican candidate, according to a study.
The study by the Pew Research Center for People and the Press found that 30 percent of Americans said they had heard a lot about the wife of Democratic presidential contender Barack Obama, while only 9 percent reported hearing a lot about Cindy McCain, the spouse of Republican candidate John McCain.
Seventy-eight percent said they had heard at least a little about Michelle Obama, while only 54 percent reported hearing at least a little about Cindy McCain, the study found.
Michelle Obama has been more heavily covered by the news media than Cindy McCain. Between Jan. 1 and June 15, Obama has been a significant newsmaker in 102 stories, while McCain has appeared in just 28 stories, according to the Pew Project for Excellence in Journalism.
In evaluating the coverage of the two candidates’ wives, about half of those questioned said the news had been a mixture of positive and negative.
But people were much more likely to say the news they had been hearing about Michelle Obama was mostly negative. About 26 percent said Obama’s coverage had been mostly negative, while 21 percent said it had been mostly positive.
Thirty-one percent said the news about Cindy McCain had been mostly positive, while only 7 percent said it had been mostly negative.
Republicans were much more likely to say the news about Obama had been mostly negative. Thirty-three percent found that to be the case, while only 10 percent of Republicans said coverage of the Democratic candidate’s wife had been mostly positive.

What do you think — has Michelle Obama been getting rougher treatment from the news media than Cindy McCain? Or are they being treated equally?

Click here for more Reuters 2008 campaign coverage.

Photo credit:  Top: Reuters/Chris Keane (Barack and Michelle Obama in Raleigh May 6); Bottom: Reuters/Mike Stone (John and Cindy McCain in Dallas March 4)


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Duhhh. Michelle Obama gets feedback on her public speaking appearances, and that’s as far as it has gone. If she doesn’t like the response, she should quit giving controversial sound bites. What we have here is a case of “If it’s too hot, get out of the kitchen.”

Posted by Kiel | Report as abusive

Cindy has the Jackie Kennedy ” look ” . She will bring grace and respect to our great country throughout the world as Jackie did. Mrs Obama comes off as an angry tough woman . She just can’t compare to Mrs . McCain .

Posted by monyneen | Report as abusive

Cindy will make a great representative for our great country . The world will love and respect her as they did Jackie Kennedy . Ms Obama comes off as an angry tough woman . Not good for America. My choise is Cindy McCain . She is so graceful .

Posted by monyneen | Report as abusive

Cindy McCain will bring grace to the White House? First, I don’t think a drug addict who stole medications from a children’s charity and “lost” bookkeeping files on the Keating S & L scandal is exactly an example of grace. Second, I don’t think Cindy McCain will be bringing anything to the White House, her husband is going to get creamed in November, and rightly so. His wife is an embarrassment, and he lacks the intelligence to be President, as his speeches clearly demonstrate. As for press coverage, the fact that most Americans don’t know Cindy McCain is a thief an an addict shows you exactly how biased the coverage is. Go ahead, look her up on Wiki. Grace? Hilarious.

Posted by Voiceofreason | Report as abusive

Just look at the two pictures in this posting, which couple looks more presidential, ready and ABLE to lead the greatest democratic nation on earth? Which would-be first lady admits that she has never been proud of this great nation -until that is, her husband has been a presidential candidate? Which smacks of anger, hubris and lust for power whenever given a platform to express their beliefs? Firstly, you get back what you put out there and secondly, the Obamas have only been on the national scene for four or five years, not more than thirty years like the McCains. Michelle and Barack Hussein Obama must be scrutinized and vetted before given the keys to the White House, a process that is sure to be enlightening for all who care to watch the slow motion disaster unfold before the DNC’s dreary eyes.

Posted by keoki | Report as abusive

Theres nothing wrong with Michelle. The problem is that the country or some people cant handle the fact that she’s an inteligent educated woman, who doesnt stand behind her husband like a statue. Mrs. McMcain can bake pies or make some beer.TRUST FUND BABY!

Posted by orazio | Report as abusive

I have not heard that Cindy McCain knows how to brew beer; she just inherited a Budweiser distributorship and stock in the megabrewer. Those distributorships are an example of the way capitalism has been corrupted by monopolies. And, it’s not even good beer, just mass market stuff. Meanwhile, Obama knocked craft beers during the campaign, apparently in order to seem less elitist. Real beer lovers don’t have a candidate in this race.

Posted by Stewart | Report as abusive

I am so disappointed with the distortions that portray Michelle Obama as an angry black woman, and refer to her as Obama baby’s mama. Comments like these are rooted in bitter racism, deeply ingrained misongy dated back to times when black women were raped and denigrated lawfully in America. These ugly, ugly, and hateful sentiments are being expressed in the world of Republicandom and it’s just awful. I am outrage that a classy mother, highly intelligent, beautiful, sweet lady like Michelle Obama has to endure this kind of treatment. In fact, black women everywhere still continue to suffer from bigoted expressions and sentiments like this around the world. It’s sad!

Posted by Timmie | Report as abusive

Michelle Obama gets more press and more public scrutiny because a) she is very bright and articulate; and 2) because she is black.

Posted by bobgil | Report as abusive

I felt bad for Cyndi McCain after her drug addiction, and her stealing drugs meant for her non for profit org. I felt bad when the Bush/Rove 2000 spread bad rumors about her, so you can imagine my SHOCK when she broke the rule of classy lady-like behavior to attack Michele Obama, instead of learn from First Lady Laura Bush.

Also, it takes a certain lack of intelligence for anyone to not understand the difference between REALLY PROUD & Proud – she said really. Mrs. Obama has also bragged about America by saying ONLY in AMERICA could her working-class background story be told. So I dont get those who overLOOK all these FACTS, and INSTEAD decided to TWIST her misSpoken words..of course the words didn’t come out the best way. BUT I KNOW NONE OF YOU GUYS EVER MAKE A MISTAKE.

IF you’re uncomfortable with a black woman, come out and say so…dont look for reason to support your issues.

Posted by Sal | Report as abusive

Michelle is getting negative publicity because she is a strong educated woman where as Cindy is a plagiarizing drug addict who quietly stands behind her geriatric man.
I wish the democrats were as good with smearing as the republicans are. McCain left his first wife after she was in a horrible car accident for Cindy- a woman young enough to be his daughter. McCain wasn’t there for his first wife in her time of need, what makes you think he won’t bail on us when we need him most?

Posted by Sarah | Report as abusive