College

College of Liberal Arts

Department

Journalism Department

Degree Name

BS in Journalism

Date

6-2019

Advisor(s)

Dan Eller

Abstract/Summary

This study was done to understand how a member of the state legislature used the media to effect policy change. This subject is discussed using the California Department of Motor Vehicles as a case study. There is a long-standing and well-understood relationship between legislators and the media. It is common knowledge that legislators in the minority party use the media to pressure members of the majority party. Research shows those in the minority benefit from this kind of coverage. However previous studies are mostly silent about whether using the media to pressure the party in control of the government actually results in improvement within the bureaucracy. This study includes interviews from experts in public relations, journalism and politics. It provides information that can be studied by other legislators to gain a better understanding about how one minority member of the California State Legislature used the media to pressure the majority party into addressing systemic problems facing the DMV.

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