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Conference Papers Year : 2020

Conservative talk radio programs as political interest group and their ideological but pragmatic relations with the Republican Party (1988 – 2010)

Sébastien Mort
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Abstract

Political and media commentators have noted the current symbiotic relation between the Fox News network and the Trump administration. While the phenomenon of revolving doors between a media outlet and a branch of government is unprecedented, the relationship between Fox and the Trump White House in fact taps into a long-standing tradition of conservative media operating as Republican role players. Focusing on nationally syndicated conservative talk radio (CTR) programs in the ante-Trump era (1988-2010) and mobilizing the theory of political parties as coalitions of interest groups, I examine how CTR negotiated a delicate position within the Republican coalition operating as an interest group in its own right. Using Clive S. Thomas’s typology of group-party interaction models (2001, 20-21), I argue that CTR programs engaged in a form of ideological but pragmatic relationship with the Republican elite, namely one that is based on ideological affinity and sometimes identical policy goals but formed on an ad hoc basis. I show how, though mutualistic, this relation fluctuated throughout the two decades as CTR programs acted as willful though autonomous allies of GOP officials, working in tandem with Republican officials when deeming it consistent with their own views and interests, but
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Dates and versions

hal-03016749 , version 1 (20-11-2020)

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  • HAL Id : hal-03016749 , version 1

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Sébastien Mort. Conservative talk radio programs as political interest group and their ideological but pragmatic relations with the Republican Party (1988 – 2010). National Communication Association 106th Annual Convention, National Communication Association (NCA), Nov 2020, Indianapolis, United States. ⟨hal-03016749⟩
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