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Newspapers, the Internet and Reaching New Voters

May 18, 2012

Want to reach an undecided voter these days? Your best bets are through newspapers, the medium through which a slim plurality of undecided voters say they get their political news.

That's the conclusion of a new survey from Mason-Dixon and Sachs Communications, which polled both which candidate voters favor and how those voters consume their news. Undecided voters say they get most of their political news from papers (22 percent), network news channels (19 percent) and the internet (17 percent), the survey of 1,000 likely general election voters, conducted May 10 through 14, found.

Voters who favor Mitt Romney are most likely to read about politics in a dead-tree edition. The survey found 27 percent of Romney voters get their news in print, while just 19 percent of those who favor President Obama do the same. Obama voters are far more likely to read about politics on websites (31 percent say that's where they get most of their news) than Romney voters (20 percent) or the undecided (17 percent).

It's no wonder Obama fans get so much of their information online. After all, younger voters overwhelmingly favor the president, and those younger voters are most likely to be trolling the Internet for news. More than half the voters between 18 and 34 -- 56 percent -- get their news online, while just under a quarter watch politics coverage on network, cable or local television stations. Obama holds a 21-point edge over Romney among voters age 18 to 29, according to Gallup tracking polls over the last month.

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