Sunday, September 09, 2007

Clinton proves favourite across the Atlantic

"Europeans overwhelmingly support Hillary Clinton in her bid to become the next US president, according to a poll published today."
This pretty much falls right in line with what I'm hearing from the Danes. I haven't done any formalized polling but everyone I've spoken with here in Denmark seems to support Hillary.

What I find most interesting is the Danish media coverage of the race. It's completely presented in a binary format. Clinton v Obama, Democrats v Republicans, conservative v liberal, etc... Of course, the US media prays at the alter of "the two sided coin". However, Danish, and European politics are multi-representational, multi-partied, multi-ideas affairs. That is also reflected in the European media.

Why does the European media follow the American binary media framing of American politics? Is this journalistic apathy which simply regurgitates dominant US media narratives? Do Europeans believe that America is somehow truly unique, representing the world's only two-diminsional society.

Politically, Hillary Clinton falls somewhere slightly to the right of Denmark's current "right" leaning ruling coalition. One would be hard pressed to find European support among the Republican field. However, if people had more information about the Democratic field, I doubt support for Hillary would be so strong.

Perhaps none of this matters. Europeans don't vote in US elections.

As an American, the relatively open and objective coverage by the European media on European politics is both refreshing and encouraging. However, the short-sided and narrow portrayal of US politics from the main stream European media is most puzzling.

What gives?