Fully 78 percent of campaign stories from Jan. 1 through May 4 examined by the Pew Project for Excellence in Journalism focused on political tactics, strategy or the state of the horserace, a opposed to policy, background or personal issues.Policy topics made up 7 percent of the stories, personal matters, 7 percent, and public record, 2 percent. Compared with a similar time period in 2007, coverage became about a fifth more political in 2008 (78 percent vs. 63 percent.)

The Daily Number is a statistic, updated every weekday and typically drawn from Pew Research Center project findings, that highlights an important trend.

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