Thank You, Mr. President: Journalist Gender in Presidential News Conferences

Lindsey Meeks


Many factors can influence journalists and the news. This study focuses on the influence of a journalist’s gender in the White House press corps by examining presidential news conferences and comparing what issues male and female journalists cover in their questions across eight administrations, from Richard Nixon to Barack Obama. This content analysis revealed three notable trends. First, women did not get called upon more often for questions over the course of the eight administrations. Second, in the aggregate, men and women were similar in their issue emphases. Third, when an additional influence was taken into account—the administration’s party affiliation—men and women journalists shifted their issue emphases.


White House press corps, journalist gender, political issues, presidential news conferences, extramedia influence

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