Tim Allen has rediscovered the virtues of local journalism.
The “Last Man Standing” star says he’s fed up with biased and speculative news content.
Allen Tweets Support for Local News
“I miss actual journalism,” Allen tweeted Thursday. “So much opinion mixed with speculation. In a search for accuracy I have leaned in to triangulating sources and asking questions. Gaining real respect for old school reporting. Local news leads the way.”
Allen did not name a local newspaper in particular. But the national news landscape has seen a trend toward partisan polarization as national brands chase viewers and clicks. Even national news outlets once seen as nonpartisan are now polarizing.
Decline of Local Newspapers, Rise in Polarization
A 2018 study in the Journal of Communication found that the decline of local newspapers has led to a rise in political polarization. The study concluded that the increased polarization results from people turning to national outlets and partisan talking points to make sense of the news.
The study’s authors described a growing divide. It’s between outlets like the New York Times or Fox News and struggling local newspapers.
“We found that the decline of local newspapers and the ‘nationalization’ of political news are polarizing vote choice. Voters were 1.9 percent more likely to vote for the same party for president and senator after a newspaper closes in their community,” they wrote. “[That’s] compared to voters in statistically similar areas where a newspaper did not close. While 1.9 percent may not seem like a lot, it’s often enough to win an election.”
In the 2020 election cycle, Allen lent his voice to an ad for Republican businessman John James. James was running to represent Michigan in the U.S. Senate. The Detroit Free Press reports that Allen hails from metro Detroit.
James narrowly lost his race to Sen. Gary Peters (D-MI). An attorney for the James campaign told a Wayne County Board of Canvassers meeting on Thursday that their campaign had “serious concerns” about how the process played out in Michigan, according to MLive.com.
Allen has previously spoken out about being a conservative in Hollywood. And he attended President Trump’s inauguration. But he has not endorsed a presidential candidate since he supported former Ohio governor John Kasich during the Republican primaries.