Timothy Egan writes in the New York Times that "fewer and fewer" voters are taking cues from "kooks with microphones" in the conservative media:
Yes, the pyramid of political dissemination is still in place: from Drudge, to Rush, to Fox, to Republican politicians in green rooms, trickling down to all the lesser Drudges and Rushes in the wacko-sphere.
They wheeze and whiff and hyperventilate. They claim there is a war on this, and a war on that (Christmas, God, golf pros). They have one mode: outrage, designed to get the pulse up, to generate a flight or fight reaction. But for all their huffing and puffing, the bloviators of the far right can no longer blow any houses down; most Americans couldn’t care less. ...
So yes, Fox and friends can still crush their own... But that only drives the Republican Party further to the fringes. Virtually everything the broadcast bullies are against — sensible gun measures, immigration reform, raising taxes on the rich — are favored by a majority of Americans.
The only way to know if this is true is to know if voters ever took cues from conservative media in the first place. Other than a study that says Fox News..., when first launched, may have influenced less than 1 percent of the vote in the 2000 presidential election, evidence to support the theory is scant.