Partisan Differences in Twitter Language Among United States Legislators During COVID-19

As COVID continues to affect the US, it becomes more and more important to understand how policy makers share information and how they frame their content. A recent study contributed to by PISC Executive Board member Zachary F. Meisel, MD, MPH, MA examined tweets from US House and Senate members from the first ten months of the COVID-19 pandemic. and used differential language analyses to compare their content and sentiment. The study found that prominent themes in Democrat tweets focused on racial disparities in healthcare, protection for essential workers, and public health guidelines, while Republican themes included vaccine development, China, and small business assistance. The authors conclude from study results that, "Divergent language use on social media corresponds to the partisan divide in several months over the course of the public health crisis."

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