WASHINGTON, March 28 (UPI) -- U.S. political pundits widely agreed last week that Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama's reputation as a gifted orator is merited, an analysis found.
The Pew Project for Excellence in Journalism found that the Illinois senator was widely praised after a speech he delivered on race in America, which came amid criticism of comments made by Obama's former pastor, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright.
"His speech was excellent," said conservative MSNBC commentator Pat Buchanan.
On Dan Abrams' MSNBC program, Democratic strategist Laura Schwartz called the address "an amazing speech in a great context." On the same program, conservative commentator Tucker Carlson characterized it as "a smart speech ... an interesting speech."
The PEJ Talk Show Index for March 17-23 found that the race for the White House accounted for 83 percent of airtime on cable and radio talk shows.
Among the three major cable news networks, MSNBC spent 82 percent of its airtime on the campaign, compared to 71 percent for CNN and 68 percent for the Fox News Channel, PEJ's News Coverage Index indicated.