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Chapter Five 1999 Post-Elections Period - Leicester Research ...

Chapter Five 1999 Post-Elections Period - Leicester Research ...

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171 Chapter Six 2004 Post-Election Period: National Interest Journalism? 6.0 Introduction This chapter presents the frames detected in the parliamentary corpus and the newspapers corpus during the 2004 post-election period. There were six frames detected in this case study. There were two overarching frames emerging in both corpora. Each corpus had one frame that was unique to it. This chapter also presents evidence suggesting that the reconfigurations in the parliamentary set up enabled the emergency of more critical frames in the parliamentary corpus. The frames reflected more open discussion on the previous government‟s fiscal and economic management record. Further, the parliamentary frames reflected a willingness to closely examine the new president‟s governance and economic agenda. This was achieved mainly because more political parties had acquired parliamentary seats in the 2004 general election apart from the three parties (UDF, MCP and AFORD) which had dominated parliament starting from 1994. Another factor in this case study was the resonant post election agenda set by the new president. This agenda included fighting corruption and fiscal malfeasance in government. This resonance opened up opportunities for more analytical editorial commentary and parliamentary speeches than experienced in 1994 and 1999. This chapter will also argue that change of owners at the BNL newspapers, and change of the proprietor‟s political alignment at the NPL newspapers affected the frames and discourse emerging in the press. While the new president‟s agenda resonated with the new parliament and the press, the absence of political interests on the part of the newspapers‟ owners meant that more critical, and less sycophant frames emerged.

172 The following section of the chapter will discuss the reconfiguration of the National Assembly and how such changes influenced parliamentary debate and the frames which emerged. It will also discuss the changes in ownership at the BNL newspapers and the changes in owner‟s political alignment at the NPL newspapers. Section 6.3 will provide a description of the overarching frames and the framing devices that worked to produce those frames. It will also discuss the factors that affected the emergence of these frames. Section 6.4 will provide a description of the frames that are unique to each corpus and the relevant framing devices. It will also discuss the framing tools used to shape these frames. Section 6.5 will argue, from the evidence presented in this chapter that journalists were freer than in previous case studies to frame issues based on the national interest. 6.1 Reconfigured Parliament and Press This section provides a brief background to the factors that led to changes in the framing influences in both corpora. This includes the emergency of new political parties and independent MPs in the National Assembly. It also includes the changes of ownership at the BNL newspapers, changes in the owner‟s political alignment at the NPL newspapers. 6.1.1 Political Landscape in 2004 The framing in the parliamentary corpus was greatly influenced by the changes on the political landscape in the country. Whereas the UDF, the MCP and the AFORD had been the only parties represented in the National Assembly after the 1994 and 1999 elections, the 2004 National Assembly consisted of several new political parties. Among these new parties was the Republican Party (RP) led by former MCP president

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