Local television news and voter support for law enforcement
- Cite this article as:
- Brown, J.C. AJCJ (1987) 11: 227. doi:10.1007/BF02885659
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Television has become “the” medium of the masses in contemporary America. However, there has been very little systematic investigation about television’s impact upon agents of political authority, such as municipal police agencies.
This research analyzes potential linkages between voter support for local police and voter viewing habits of local television news. The impact of television news upon voter support for police is assessed in the context of a multivariate model, which includes media and non-media predictor variables. Voter “support” for a municipal police agency is deemed a multidimensional concept and is measured in absolute and relative terms.
The findings of this exploratory study suggest that local television news has minimal or no impact (positively or negatively) upon voter attitudes toward local police agencies. The inability of mediaand non-media variables to explain voter support for municipal law enforcement indicates the need for a completely new paradigm to guide research in this niche of criminal justice.