A new study indicates that Republican presidential candidates may be correct in claiming that the media is inherently biased against them. According to two journalism professors at Indiana University, only 7 percent of journalists identify as Republicans, and they usually donate to Democrats, reports The Washington Times.
The Indiana University journalism professors, Lars Willnat and David Weaver, found that self-proclaimed Democratic journalists outnumber those who identify as Republican by a 4-to-1 ratio.
Twenty-eight percent of journalists say they are Democrats, but only 7 percent call themselves Republicans, however, both numbers have declined since the 1970s as the number of journalists identifying as independents continues to grow, according to the Times.
"There's something in the DNA of liberals that makes them want to go into jobs like the arts, journalism and academia more so than conservatives," Washington pundit Tim Groseclose told the Times. "Even if you're just trying to maximize profits by offering an alternative point of view, it's hard to find conservative reporters. So it's natural the media is more liberal."
David D'Alessio, a communications sciences professor at the University of Connecticut at Stamford, agreed that there is bias in the press, but said it all evens out in the end, as most reporting is balanced to meet the wants of the moderate reader base.
The research comes following the third Republican presidential debate, hosted by CNBC and widely criticized by conservatives for questions seemingly designed to pit Republicans against each other rather than generate discussion on substantive policy positions.
"The questions that have been asked so far in the debate illustrate why the American people don't trust the media," Texas Sen. Ted Cruz said during the debate to strong applause, reported Vanity Fair. "This is not a cage match. You look at the questions: 'Donald Trump, are you a comic book villain?' 'Ben Carson, can you do math?' 'John Kasich, will you insult two people over here?' 'Marco Rubio, why don't you resign?' 'Jeb Bush, why have your numbers fallen?' How about talking about the substantive issues people care about?"
At another point in the debate, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio claimed that the "Democrats have the ultimate super PAC - it is called the mainstream media."
While many of the questions asked during the debate were appropriately tough and probing, critics say the CNBC moderators appeared unusually hostile in their wording, so much so that Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus suspended future debates with NBC, as HNGN previously reported.
As Republican candidates now prepare for the fourth primary debate on Tuesday in Milwaukee, all eyes will be on the people doing the questioning and their possible motives. That debate will air on Fox Business Network and be moderated by two of the network's anchors along with a Wall Street Journal editor-in-chief.