October 31, 2022



One Country Project Releases Q3 2022 Media Analysis

Washington, D.C. – Today, One Country Project (OCP) released its Q3 Media Analysis, the third in a series for 2022. The analysis compares traditional media coverage from rural and national outlets, as well as rural traditional media and social media. From July to September, these media landscapes focused on the economy and inflation, abortion, and energy in the landscape of the approaching midterms.

“With the midterm elections approaching, OCP’s Q3 Media Analysis is vital for understanding where voters are leaning and what they’ll prioritize when they get to the polls,” said OCP founder Heidi Heitkamp. “Conversations in rural America continue to focus on the economy and the resurrection of the job market. In addition, issues regarding abortion, crime, and energy are driving rural voters to the polls to elect candidates who reflect their values.”

“Regarding abortion, conversation in rural outlets has shifted to the urgency of elections and extreme policy initiatives of individual politicians. This is particularly important to rural voters – especially women – who already have limited access to health care. Additionally, the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) generated conversations throughout the country, giving positive credit to Democrats for achieving legislative wins for our communities; but concerns regarding implementation and how and when rural voters will receive these historic benefits remains.”

The key findings of the third quarter media analysis include:

Media Coverage Key Findings

  • Key moments of national policy have become central to rural media coverage as the midterms approach. Coverage of the IRA and news surrounding state and federal abortion policy have moved from the outside perimeter of coverage in Q2 to central focus areas tightly connected to the rest of rural coverage in Q3.
  • Immigration emerged as a key coverage area in both rural and national coverage following news on Governor Abbott’s busing program.
  • Election and voting coverage was of greater focus in rural outlets closely following primaries and election integrity.
  • Climate and environment concerns grew as heat waves, droughts, wildfires, and floods hit the U.S. and countries around the world.
  • COVID-19 has become a supporting story line and not a distinct focus in rural news.

Social Media Topic Analysis Key Findings

  • Inflation conversation grew slightly in both rural and urban social media conversations while other key topics decreased. Notably, abortion conversations remained more resilient in rural than urban conversations.
  • The Inflation Reduction Act was the focus of conversation as rural voices dissected the content of the bill, critiqued spending, and celebrated passage. Focus on Republicans voting against key measures, such as insulin price caps, continued narratives from Q2 driving engagement on shortcomings and missteps.
  • Electric vehicles remained in focus as discussion around how to build a proper infrastructure were outlined. Concerns were amplified by power conservation efforts amid droughts in California. Elitism continued to resonate as increasing prices of vehicles was compared against tax breaks included in the Inflation Reduction Act.

View the media analysis here.


About One Country Project

The One Country Project, founded by former U.S. Senator Heidi Heitkamp, is working to promote greater opportunities for rural communities and ensure leaders earn their support. One Country is reengaging with rural Americans, serving as a clearinghouse of research and information for rural Americans, and working to ensure leaders regain trust by fighting for these communities. To learn more, visit the website,