If Fox Is Partisan, It Is Not Alone

By Andrew Gauthier 

The New York Times

The Obama White House’s decision to challenge Fox News appears driven equally by strategy and frustration. It is also a test case for politicians in both parties.

That is because partisan fragmentation throughout America’s news media and their audiences has grown significantly. Future Republican presidents will have to decide, as Team Obama has, how to buck or accommodate that trend.

Fox News has attracted the most attention because of its “fair and balanced” challenge to its competitors and its success. But the audiences of its competitors have tilted sharply in the other direction.

Press critics worry that the rise of media polarization threatens the foundation of credible, common information that American politics needs to thrive. Will Feltus, a Republican specialist in voter targeting, does not.

If it complicates the choices facing leaders in Washington, Mr. Feltus argues, it also decentralizes political communication in a way that is both inevitable and healthy in the information age. “I feel no hand-wringing about it,” Mr. Feltus said. More…