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Study Finds Mainstream Media Devotes Little Attention to Ron Paul

Jason Merritt/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- He finished second in Iowa's Ames Straw Poll but the mainstream media hasn’t devoted much attention to Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul, according to a new study released Thursday by the Pew Center for Excellence in Journalism.

Paul was the focus of 27 campaign stories, according to Pew, based on an analysis of pieces that ran between Jan. 1 to Aug. 14.  The stories were compiled from a list of 52 news outlets tracked by Pew in their News Coverage Index.

In contrast, Donald Trump, who never entered the race, was heavily featured in 94 stories and Rick Perry, who just entered the race, was cited in 44.  President Obama was the focus of 221.

“The lack of coverage does suggest a conventional wisdom among many journalists that he can’t win the Republican nomination,” said Mark Jurkowitz, who is the Associate Director at the Pew Center for Excellence in Journalism.

Stories counted towards the study required that the candidate be featured in more than 50 percent of the story.  Pew called that number the measure of a “dominant newsmaker.”

But is Paul getting a fair shake?

Paul has accused the media of being “frightened by [him] me challenging the status quo.”  He made that accusation while appearing on CNN’s Piers Morgan.

Adding insult to injury, Politico reported that appearances by Paul were canceled by NBC’s Today Show and Fox News Sunday.

Despite the lack of media coverage, Paul managed to rank fourth in popularity among GOP presidential candidates in a recent ABC/Washington Post poll, which has him at 9 percent,  beating Rick Perry, Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich, Jon Huntsman, Tim Pawlenty and Rick Santorum.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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