Graduation Date

5-2020

Document Type

Senior Thesis

Degree

Bachelor of Arts

Primary Major

Political Science

Primary Minor

Pre-law

Second Minor

History

Program Director

Alison Howard, MA

Thesis Advisor

Alison Howard, MA

Abstract

As of 2020, there are 11 million undocumented immigrants in the United States? Recently, the topic of immigration in the United States has become more controversial. In 2013, the U.S. Senate passed S.744 the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act of 2013. When this bill was introduced many believed that it had a good chance of making it through the legislative process. The bill represented a compromise between Republicans and Democrats and addressed many problems associated with immigration. However, the bill was not passed by the House of Representatives, leaving the issue of immigration reform unresolved. The role of the media is to provide information to the public, to the best of its ability, about what the government is doing. Once information is presented by the media, members of the public can form their own opinions about the issues being addressed by elected officials. The media employs a process referred to as media framing to package information for presentation to its audience. Framing is therefore an important aspect of how information is communicated. What people know about issues, and how much they know, can affect what people think about issues. What kind of information did the public have about immigration reform during the time the bill was being debated by the Senate and how was this information framed? This thesis examines articles from the New York Times and The Hill during the time that the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act of 2013 was being debated by the Senate to determine how these media outlets framed immigration policy and reform. This thesis coded thirty articles to see if the media framed the issue as one of three frames: moral, economic, or national security. The results showed that of the articles studied, a majority of the articles had a moral frame.

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