The Morning After: The Effect of the Network Call for Bush

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Abstract:

By the weekend following the election of 2000, two possible frames were available to the press covering developments in Florida. In the first, Gore had won the popular vote and the outcome in the electoral college was uncertain. In the second, Bush was ahead in the vote in the state that would determine the results in the electoral college and, as such, the presumed victor until Gore proved otherwise. Elite discourse as revealed in Sunday morning talk shows eventually settled into the second frame, but not until the certification of the Florida vote by Florida Secretary of State Katherine Harris. Elite discourse was not, however, beneficial to Bush in the early weeks of the protest phase of the election.

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