PEJPoll Finds More Believe GOP Will Retake House

Half (50%)
of respondents in the latest Project for Excellence in Journalism's
(PEJ) latest News Interest Index say they think Republicans will
recapture the House. That is up from 41% in September.

Only 29% say Democrats will remain in the majority, down from 34% last month.

The change
was mostly due to an increasing number of Democrats who now believe
their party will lose, according to PEJ. A third now believe that,
compared to only a fifth in September.

Among close followers of the news, the Republican takeover seems even more likely, with 67% saying they saw that result.

Saying it
was a sign of the fragmenting news landscape, PEJ's survey also found
that over half of the respondents (52%) could come up with no names when
asked what journalist they most admired. That
is compared to 44% in March 2007 and only 35% in the mid-1980's.

Of those
that were mentioned, no name got more than a 5% share. The top names
were Diane Sawyer at 5%, Katie Couric at 4%, and Bill O'Reilly and Glenn
Beck at 3%. But given the margin of error, none
of those could statistically claim the top spot.

One change
from past surveys is the decline of broadcast news mentions relative to
cable. In 2007, 25% of the mentions for most admired news figure were
broadcasters, and 14% were cable. The cable
figure has edged up to 16% in the latest poll, but the broadcast
mentions have decreased to 17%.

Among cable news figures named, talk hosts like Jon Stewart and Beck, topped cable news anchors.

The survey was of 1,005 adults and was conducted Oct. 7-10 by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press.

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.