NewYorkBusiness.com’s Matthew Flamm speculates about whether a downturn in Republican fortunes is affecting FNC…(sub. req.)
But in the past two years, according to a survey by the Pew Research Center, Republicans have been tuning out international news and news about Iraq at more than double the rate of Democrats and Independents. It may be that some of them are also tuning out Fox News.
“There is widespread evidence, not so much that Republicans are changing their politics, but that they’re becoming less motivated,” says Andrew Tyndall, an independent television news analyst.
Fox News executives respond that the channel has no political leanings and that ratings declines are due to comparisons with a news-filled prior year–a period that featured the 2004 election, a tsunami, the deaths of Terry Schiavo and the Pope, and the disappearance of Natalee Holloway in Aruba.
“News is a cyclical business,” says Bill Shine, senior vice president of programming. “This is not a big deal.”