The Fox Primary By The Numbers, August 29 - September 4

When Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain appeared on last Friday's Your World with Neil Cavuto, Cavuto described Cain as a “very, very strong force” in the presidential campaign. Cavuto described the applause of a few people in his outdoor audience as “a lot of fans.”

Current polling shows Cain with an average of 4.3% support.

Fox viewers probably have a distorted perception of Cain's strength, since -- in addition to Cavuto's praise -- he is such a regular presence on the channel. Cain has appeared on Fox 30 times since the beginning of June and has racked up over 4 hours of airtime.

So who's winning the Fox Primary? Each week at Media Matters, we watch the interviews, crunch the numbers, and tell you what Fox is up to in the presidential campaign.

John Bolton announced on Tuesday that he will not be running for President. Bolton made the announcement on Fox News, where he's a contributor. He will not be included in future Fox Primary updates.

Last Week's Results

Total time: 2 hours; Total appearances: 22

Most Total Airtime on Fox: John Bolton (23 minutes)

Most Total Appearances: John Bolton (5 appearances)

Fox Show with the Most Total Candidate Airtime: On The Record With Greta Van Susteren (31 minutes)

Fox Show with the Most Candidate Appearances: On The Record With Greta Van Susteren (5 appearances)

Longest Candidate Interview: On The Record With Greta Van Susteren (8 minutes with Jon Huntsman)

Softball Question(s) of the Week: From the September 3 edition of Fox & Friends Saturday, co-host Clayton Morris asked candidate Newt Gingrich this:

MORRIS: Just a few seconds left here Mr. Speaker, the GOP debate set for this week, we all know that date very well now. US News & World Report called you “the comeback kid” after your performance in the last debate, any strategy you can release this morning that you're going to be putting forward at the debate this week?

(A table of the August 29 - September 4 data is available here.)

The Numbers Since June 1

Total time: 33 hours and 44 minutes*; Total appearances: 288*

Most Total Airtime on Fox since June 1: John Bolton (4 hours and 51 minutes)

Most Total Appearances since June 1: John Bolton (67 appearances)

Fox Show with the Most Total Candidate Airtime Since June 1: Hannity (5 hours and 23 minutes)*

Fox Show with the Most Candidate Appearances since June 1: On the Record with Greta Van Susteren (43 appearances)*

Longest Candidate Interview since June 1: Stossel (40 minutes with Gary Johnson)

(A table of all the data since June 1 is available here.)

Previous Fox Primary Reports

June 1 - 5
June 6 - 12
June 13 - 19
June 20 - 26
June 27 - July 4
July 5 - 10
July 11 - 17
July 18 - 24
July 25 - 31
August 1 - 7
August 8 - 14
August 15 - 21
August 22 - 28


Media Matters searched the Nexis database for appearances on Fox News Channel, Fox Business Network, and Fox News Sunday for the 14 declared and potential presidential candidates in question: Michele Bachmann, John Bolton, Herman Cain, Newt Gingrich, Rudy Giuliani, Jon Huntsman, Gary Johnson, Thad McCotter, Sarah Palin, Ron Paul, Rick Perry, Buddy Roemer, Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum.

For programs where a transcript was unavailable, Media Matters reviewed the raw video.

Changes to the reports

Media Matters added McCotter to the data beginning on June 20 and Roemer beginning on July 18.

We stopped including Pawlenty and Trump in the data beginning on August 14; Pawlenty dropped out of the race on that date. And while Trump stated that he would no longer seek the Republican nomination but may instead run as an independent (on June 1, the beginning of this report), we decided to drop him from the data on this date.

*Correction: We have dropped all DeMint data from the report. During Laura Ingraham's June 14 show, DeMint told the conservative talk radio host that he is “not considering” a run for president in 2012. Media Matters regrets the error.