In political circles you see it all the time when talking about the 2016 presidential race. People get that exasperated look on their face, often with a slight smile and a shake of the head, then say: “I’ve just never seen anything like this before.”
Of course that’s because of one candidate, Donald Trump, who has defied just about every long-held belief about how modern political candidates are supposed to behave and how modern political campaigns are supposed to be run.
Trump has also exposed some real problems in the way media covers campaigns. In our thirst for page views and viewer numbers, we’ve kept our pens and lenses fixed on the traveling train wreck that is Trump throughout the election season so far, as a new study from Harvard’s Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy confirms—even after Trump had sealed the nomination and the Democratic fight raged on. From the report:
After Cruz and Kasich quit the race in early May, clearing the way for Trump’s nomination, it might be thought that the press would shift its attention to the on-going Democratic race. Even then, however, Trump was the headliner, receiving more coverage than either Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders in each of the last five weeks of the primary campaign.