Fox News now referencing DeSantis more than Trump, study reveals

Former president mentioned far more often on MSNBC and CNN compared to Fox News

Gustaf Kilander
Washington, DC
Wednesday 15 March 2023 16:50 GMT
Related video: Ron DeSantis plays catch with Fox News reporter during interview

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is being mentioned more on Fox News than former President Donald Trump as they move closer to their expected battle for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination.

Hosts and guests appearing on air on the right-wing network mentioned Mr Trump more than Mr DeSantis every week until last week when the Florida governor was mentioned 177 times and Mr Trump 142 times, according to Media Matters, which noted that the shift may reveal a change in focus towards the 44-year-old governor as he gears up to announce his expected run for president.

Mr Trump remains far ahead of Mr DeSantis in Fox News mentions when looking at the first 10 weeks of the year – 1,571 vs 791.

Mr DeSantis published his memoir The Courage to Be Free: Florida’s Blueprint for America’s Survival last month and has since gone on a book tour widely interpreted as a shadow presidential campaign.

It sold 94,300 copies during its first week on sale, according to BookScan. It’s far above the sales of books by other possible candidates.

Florida has remained in the national spotlight as it passes laws to curtail the rights of women, trans and non-binary individuals, and bloggers. School districts in the Sunshine State have also carried on with their banning of books.

On CNN and MSNBC, Mr Trump is mentioned much more often than on Fox News – 1,571 times compared to 6,482 on MSNBC and 2,683 on CNN, according to Media Matters.

Mr DeSantis has appeared seven times on Fox News since the beginning of the year. He has appeared twice on Tucker Carlson’s primetime show, twice on the morning programme Fox & Friends, and once on Jesse Watters Primetime, Unfiltered with Dan Bongino, and Sunday Morning Futures with Maria Bartiromo.

By comparison, Mr Trump hasn’t appeared on the network at all this year. Most recently, he sat down with Sean Hannity for an interview shown on the host’s programme on 21 and 22 September last year.

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