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Americans are as divided as ever. What does that mean for our democracy and the media?

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The U.S. Capitol building in Washington, D.C. on a clear-skied day.
Jewel Samad
/
AFP

Ahead of a members-only speaking event held by American Public Square in Kansas City, Washington political journalist Margaret Talev discussed the state of American democracy, startling data on political divisions and how journalists should approach these issues.

Over the last two decades, Americans have become increasingly divided along party lines on issues like abortion, immigration, climate change and gun rights.

National political journalist and Syracuse University professor Margaret Talev says the shifting landscape of the media has played a huge factor.

"The more local news has eroded, the more polarized audiences become," Talev said. "The news that you consume, particularly if its national cable news, very much solidifies your starting point on what stories you think are important, what storylines you believe or don't believe."

  • Margaret Talev, political journalist, Kramer director of Syracuse University Institute for Democracy, Journalism and Citizenship
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