Only 3.4% of U.S. journalists are Republicans: Survey

Only 3.4% of U.S. journalists are Republicans: Survey

The number of full-time American journalists who say they’re Republicans plummeted in the past decade, while Democrats in that profession rose.

According to a new survey titled “The American Journalist Under Attack,” released by Syracuse University’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, Republicans in the industry fell from 18% in 2002 and 7.1% in 2013 to 3.4% in 2022.

That’s significantly lower than the number of American adults who say they’re Republicans (26%), according to a 2022 ABC News/Washington Post poll.

Democrats in the news industry saw their ranks swell by eight percentage points in 2022 to 36%.

The number is nine percentage points higher than the overall Democrat population of 27%, according to the ABC News/Washington Post poll.

The new survey notes that the figure is the third-highest percentage of journalists identifying as Democrats since 1971.

The study included other findings that covered various topics in the journalism workplace, including educational levels, workplace satisfaction, shrinking newsrooms, median ages of reporters, women, minorities, sought-after training and social media.

According to the survey, 22% of the respondents said journalism in the U.S. was headed in the right direction, while 60.1% said otherwise. Similar numbers of respondents said the same a decade ago.  

When asked about the “most important problem facing journalism today,” the journalists mentioned these issues most often: declining public trust in the news media, shrinking local and community news coverage, perceived bias and opinion journalism, fake news and disrupted business models.

This survey resumes the series of national studies of U.S. journalists launched in 1971 by sociologist John Johnstone. It continued in 1982, 1992, 2002 and 2013 by David Weaver, Cleve Wilhoit and their colleagues at Indiana University.

The new study was based on an online survey with 1,600 U.S. journalists and conducted in early 2022. 

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