Senator-elect Rand Paul was the third most-covered candidate nationwide this election season.

The most-covered was Delaware Senate candidate Christine O’Donnell, followed by California gubernatorial candidate Meg Whitman. None of which were covered anywhere near as much as President Barack Obama. The full rankings show that media coverage doesn’t translate to victory (Sharron Angle, Carl Paladino and Charlie Crist are also in the top ten).

What does this tell us about the media during the elections? Candidates that stood little reasonable chance of winning were given more coverage than their opponents. While it’s true that some candidates deserved coverage, was the spectacle of bizarre pasts and outrageous statements more newsworthy than even coverage of the issues? Was the national-broadcast of a Delaware Senate debate necessary? Was the movement that put these candidates on the ballot given too much attention, and were the causes and background of that movement not given enough?

Let us know in the comments.