Book Bias: Networks Cover Liberal Bestsellers 2-1 Over Conservative Ones

September 24th, 2014 11:25 AM

In a fishy and yet unsurprising move the liberal newspapers bestsellers list banished David Limbaugh’s new book, “Jesus on Trial,” from it’s well-earned place on their list. The book should sit at this week’s number four spot, having sold “9,660 in its first week out … Instead, Henry Kissinger’s World Order, praised by Hillary Clinton in the Washington Post, is No. 4 despite weekly sales of 6,607.” In direct correlation, you haven’t seen David Limbaugh interviewed about his book on any major network either.

But a berth on the New York Time’s bestsellers list doesn’t guarantee conservative authors and books the attention of the wider media. CMI addressed this issue of imbalanced favoritism towards liberal bestsellers by the media networks in a 2009 special report titled Unmentionable: Best-Selling Conservative Books and the Networks that Ignore Them. The report found that, “Since the 1940s, authors whose works make the list have been assured of even more books sales and a shower of publicity.  But not when those authors or their books are conservative. In such cases, the three broadcast networks greeted them with silence at worst and skepticism at best.” The networks covered liberal books three times as often as conservative works. Spoiler alert: Not much has changed.

In 2014, between January and September there have been twenty conservative authors, a few with more than one title, making the bestseller list compared to just eight liberal authors who have made the list. The conservative authors have also enjoyed the spotlight for three times longer than the liberals. On average a book penned by a conservative has remained in the Top 15 for twelve weeks; a liberal title for an average of just four weeks. The numbers clearly show that public attention and interest favors the conservative although you would never know it based on who the major news networks gives attention to and whose books they choose to promote or ignore.

NBC, CBS and ABC have hosted five out of the eight liberal authors a respectable 62.5 percent, who have appeared on the New York Time’s bestselling list; majority of which only held a spot in the Top 15 for just one week- a combined total of just 26 weeks.

In comparison those same networks interviewed just six out of the twenty conservative authors, a pathetic 30 percent. Their books remained on the list for an average of nine weeks – a combined total of 55 weeks. Based on media attention one would think the numbers were reversed. And yet liberal media would have you believe they’re not biased.

Most people probably don’t have the New York Time’s Best Sellers list saved to favorites to be accessed weekly, at least not compared to the number of people who watch ABC’s “Good Morning America,” NBC’s “Today” and/or CBS’ “This Morning” –shows that interview the bestselling authors most frequently. But the shows act as gatekeepers, rarely allowing conservative books – and the ideas and perspectives they contain – broad public exposure.


Books Studied:

 Things That Matter- Charles Krauthammer

America- Dinesh D’Souza

One Nation- Ben Carson

UnPHILtered- Phil Robertson

The Way Forward- Paul Ryan

Blood Feud- Edward Klein

Killing Jesus- Bill O’Reilly

Clinton, Inc.- Daniel Halper

Special Heart- Bret Baier

Good Call- Jase Robertson

10% Happier- Dan Harris

Big Tent- Mallory Factor

The Women of Duck Commander- Kay Robertson

Not Cool- Greg Gutfeld

Duty- Robert M. Gates

My Age of Anxiety- Scott Stossel

The Loudest Voice in the Room- Gabriel Sherman

Miracles & Massacres- Glenn Beck

Happy, Happy, Happy- Phil Robertson

Si-Cology- Si Robertson

Killing Kennedy- Bill O’Reilly

Jesus on Trial- David Limbaugh

Off the Sidelines- Kirsten Gillibrand

Waking Up- Sam Harris

Diary of a Mad Diva- Joan Rivers

The Teacher Wars- Dana Goldstein

Hard Choices- Hillary Rodham Clinton

A Fighting Chance- Elizabeth Warren

Six Amendments- John Paul Stevens

HRC- Jonathan Allen & Amie Parnes