Political Research Quarterly

Published by SAGE Publications
Online ISSN: 1065-9129
Publications
STATE DIFFERENCES IN ABORTION ATTITUDES PERCENTAGES* National CA FL IL OH PA TX 
Article
We investigate the distinctiveness of state attitudes and their impact on attitudes toward legal abortion. We find modest differences in the level of support for legal abortion and for additional restrictions on abortion, but these differences are not significant after controls for the demographic characteristics, religion, and ideology of each state's citizens. Our results suggest that the abortion debate is a national debate, and that state differences in abortion attitudes can be explained by differences in the charateristics and other attitudes of the states' citizenry.
 
Article
This article compares the voting behavior of women and men in presidential elections since 1980. We rest whether the different levels of salience which men and women attribute to different issues or the different preferences men and women have on issues best accounts for the gender gap. Utilizing theories of different issue emphasis between men and women, we use a multivariate model to demonstrate that a combination of respondent views on the economy, social programs, military action, abortion, and ideology can consistently explain at least three-fourths of the gender gap in the 1984, 1988, and 1992 elections. We show that, consistent with prior research on individual elections, women placed more emphasis on the national economy than men, and men placed more emphasis on pocketbook voting than women. We add evidence showing that women have consistently more negative assessments of the economy than do men, suggesting that a part, of what has been considered a Republican-Democratic gender gap is really an anti-incumbent bias on the part of women. We also clarify the interpretation of partisan identification in explaining the gender gap.
 
Article
In this study, we examine the extent to which legislators receive elec toral benefits from altering the geographic distribution of federal outlays. Although there are both theoretical and anecdotal reasons to believe in the existence of such benefits, previous empirical work has largely failed to verify the connection between pork barreling and reelection. We ex amine House incumbents during the 1980s, when budget deficits were allegedly forcing legislators to end the acquisition of distributive benefits, and we discover that legislators did in fact reap electoral benefits from pork barreling in the 1980s. We further discover that there is a sharp partisan difference in the marginal effects of federal outlays: additional federal monies strongly affect Democratic reelection margins but barely impact the electoral fortunes of Republicans. This conclusion has impor tant implications for current debates about Congress, divided govern ment, and the recent Republican takeover of Congress.
 
Article
In this study, we integrate research findings on the impact of exposure to stereotype reinforcing local crime news with theories about the impact of residential context on attitudes about race and crime. To date, there has been no research investigating whether neighborhood context mitigates or exacerbates the impact of exposure to racially stereotypic crime news. We test extensions of two competing theories. According to the social contact hypothesis, under certain circumstances whites’ residential proximity to blacks might reduce the likelihood of further negative effects via exposure to racially stereotypic media messages. On the other hand, according to the group threat hypothesis, proximity to blacks might increase whites’ sensitivity to stereotype-reinforcing crime news. We collected information about the neighborhood racial context for each respondent in an experiment. We then exposed respondents either to racially stereotypic or non-stereotypic crime stories on local news programs. Results support our prediction based on the social contact hypothesis. When exposed to racial stereotypes in the news, white respondents living in white homogeneous neighborhoods endorsed more punitive policies to address crime, expressed more negative stereotypic evaluations of blacks, and felt more distant from blacks as a group. Whites from more mixed neighborhoods were either unaffected or moved in the opposite direction: endorsing less punitive crime policies, less negative stereotypes, and feeling closer to blacks as a group as a result of exposure to the stereotypic coverage. The implication of this moderating impact of residential integration is discussed.
 
Article
Different types of legislative politics are explained by the distribution and intensity of legislators' demands. Demands are legislators' willingness to pay for victory on a bill. Different demand distributions require different institutional structures and "politics" for the legislators to obtain the results they want. The types of politics are similar to Lowi's typology of interest-group interaction. The paper describes the demand distributions formally, and then identifies the institutional structures and "politics" required to write and pass bills for distributive, regulative, and redistributive demand distributons. Applying the principle to case studies, differences from Lowi's classification are found; the actual politics are better predicted by the demand approach.
 
Article
This article examines the effect of foreign armed intervention on human rights conditions in target countries. It is argued that military intervention contributes to the rise of state repression by enhancing the state’s coercive power and encouraging more repressive behavior, especially when it is supportive or neutral towards the target government. Results from bivariate probit models estimated on time-series cross-section data show that supportive and neutral interventions increase the likelihood of extra-judicial killing, disappearance, political imprisonment, and torture. Hostile interventions increase only the probability of political imprisonment. The involvement of an intergovernmental organization or a liberal democracy as an intervener is unlikely to make any major difference in the suggested negative impact of intervention.
 
Article
This article explores the extent, and possible causes, of income-based biases in representation of citizens by members of the 110th Congress. The author finds that the preferences of wealthier citizens are modestly but significantly better reflected in the choices of their congressional representatives than are the preferences of poorer citizens. More importantly, the author shows that education, political sophistication, political engagement, ethnicity, and other sociodemographic factors can explain only a small part of this representation gap. Biases in representation across income lines appear to be driven by income alone, or at least not by politically relevant factors correlated with income.
 
Article
Peer Reviewed http://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/2027.42/68986/2/10.1177_106591297502800221.pdf
 
Article
Women’s political representation exhibits substantial cross-national variation. While mechanisms shaping these variations are well understood for Western democracies, there is little consensus on how these same factors operate in less developed countries. Effects of two political institutions—electoral systems and gender quotas—are tested across 168 countries from 1992 to 2010. Findings indicate that key causal factors interact with a country’s socioeconomic development, shifting their importance and possibly even direction at various development thresholds. Generalizing broadly across countries, therefore, does not adequately represent the effects of these political institutions. Rather, different institutional changes are advised to increase women’s presence in national governments.
 
Article
Peer Reviewed http://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/2027.42/68763/2/10.1177_106591298203500215.pdf
 
Article
This study examines voter turnout in the American states in U.S. presidential and House elections from 1920 through 2008. A model predicts turnout as the sum of the national campaign context, state autonomy, and electoral continuity. The national campaign context encompasses conditions that prompt turnout to shift similarly across states. State autonomy involves state-specific factors that prompt turnout to vary across states. Electoral continuity involves people voting in successive elections, regardless of other influences. Testing the model finds that national campaign context effects have increased, but they vary by year, election type, and region and have been mixed since the 1970s.
 
Article
Scholars have long bemoaned congressional disinterest in oversight. We explain varied congressional attention to oversight by advancing the contingent oversight theory. We show how the structure of congressional committees, partisan majorities, and theories of delegation together explain when, why, and for how long Congress investigated executive branch malfeasance between 1947 and 2004. Divided government, partisan committees, and committees characterized by broad statutory discretion generate more investigations, whereas distributive committees and unified government dampen Congress’ investigatory vigor. The conduct of oversight depends on more than a desire to produce good government or the incentive structures faced by individual members of Congress.
 
Article
Peer Reviewed http://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/2027.42/68666/2/10.1177_106591295100400228.pdf
 
Article
Peer Reviewed http://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/2027.42/68311/2/10.1177_106591295100400317.pdf
 
Article
Peer Reviewed http://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/2027.42/68862/2/10.1177_106591295100400209.pdf
 
Article
Peer Reviewed http://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/2027.42/68573/2/10.1177_106591295100400242.pdf
 
Article
Peer Reviewed http://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/2027.42/69060/2/10.1177_106591295100400316.pdf
 
Article
Peer Reviewed http://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/2027.42/68945/2/10.1177_106591295100400134.pdf
 
Article
Peer Reviewed http://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/2027.42/68389/2/10.1177_106591295100400215.pdf
 
Article
Peer Reviewed http://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/2027.42/68542/2/10.1177_106591295400700424.pdf
 
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Peer Reviewed http://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/2027.42/68428/2/10.1177_106591295600900232.pdf
 
Article
Peer Reviewed http://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/2027.42/68812/2/10.1177_106591295801100116.pdf
 
Article
If candidates sometimes seek to distinguish themselves from their parties and are ambiguous about their policy positions, to what extent do the policy platforms of parties affect individuals’ perceptions of presidential candidate positions? Using data from the American National Election Study and the Comparative Manifesto Project from 1972 to 2000, we show that citizens are able to use party platforms in their assessments of presidential candidates. We also demonstrate that an individual’s level of education is important in the process of linking Republican Party platforms to Republican presidential candidates. Our findings have important implications for the role of parties in presidential elections.
 
Article
Social conservatives' strength in Republican national convention delegations has grown substantially over the past twenty years. This note demonstrates that this growth varied systematically across states depending on the combination of activist strategies and opportunities afforded by delegate selection rules. Using aggregate Republican convention data analysis from 1976-1996, and GLS regression analyses of state delegation data from 1984-1996, I test the impact of rules on the makeup of Republican delegations, and whether that effect has changed over time. I find that delegations from states with procedures which allow influence from the grassroots were more likely to have a high number of social conservative issue activists. This effect was first apparent in 1992, and continued in 1996. The opposite was true for socially liberal group activists.
 
Article
We examined Ronald Reagan's 1980 election campaign to judge the effects of his Issue of the Day (IOD) media management strategy on his image as portrayed in the print and televised news media. The IOD strategy attempts to shape the content and tone of coverage by limiting press access to Reagan, formalizing the relationship, and conveying a single message over extended periods of time. Our analysis shows Reagan had success shaping the content of the press's coverage, but not its tone. We also found that the IOD strategy had greater effects on televised news programs than on the print media.
 
Article
We examined Ronald Reagan's 1980 election campaign to judge the effects of his Issue of the Day (IOD) media management strategy on his image as portrayed in the print and televised news media. The IOD strategy attempts to shape the content and tone of coverage by limiting press access to Reagan, formalizing the relationship, and conveying a single message over extended periods of time. Our analysis shows Reagan had success shaping the content of the press's coverage, but not its tone. We also found that the IOD strategy had greater effects on televised news programs than on the print media.
 
Article
This article applies neoinstitutional organization theory to uncover the central role of university officials in institutionalizing aggressive, race-based affirmative admissions procedures at three selective public universities from the late 1970s until the early 1990s. During this second stage of affirmative action, admissions and diversity officials at the University of California, Berkeley, the University of Texas at Austin, and the University of Wisconsin—Madison began to increasingly emphasize the diversity rationale and the method of individualized review. At a time of increasing judicial and executive scrutiny and skepticism of affirmative action, university officials defended and transformed race-conscious admissions in innovative ways when they could have instead chosen to contribute to its demise.
 
Article
This paper examines how the growth in vote-by-mail and changes in voting technologies led to changes in the residual vote rate in California from 1990 to 2010. We find that in California’s presidential elections, counties that abandoned punch cards in favor of optical scanning enjoyed a significant improvement in the residual vote rate. However, these findings do not always translate to other races. For instance, find that the InkaVote system in Los Angeles has been a mixed success, performing very well in presidential and gubernatorial races, fairly well for ballot propositions, and poorly in Senate races. We also conduct the first analysis of the effects of the rise of vote-by-mail on residual votes. Regardless of the race, increased use of the mails to cast ballots is robustly associated with a rise in the residual vote rate. The effect is so strong that the rise of voting by mail in California has mostly wiped out all the reductions in residual votes that were due to improved voting technologies since the early 1990s.
 
WHICH OF THESE GENERAL ISSUES-IF ANY-WERE MOST IMPORTANT TO YOU IN DECIDING HOW YOU WOULD VOTE FOR MAYOR TODAY? 
BREAKDOWN OF VOTES IN THE 2001 MAYORAL RUNOFF ELECTION BY RACE, RELIGION, AND IDEOLOGY 
APPROVAL RATINGS OF THE RUNOFF CANDIDATES 
RATINGS OF RUNOFF CANDIDATES ON THE BASIS OF CERTAIN QUALITIES 
Article
This paper investigates the use of a deracialized electoral strategy by a Latino candidate, Antonio Villaraigosa, during his campaign for mayor of the city of Los Angeles, California. The aim of the research is to explain why the Latino candidate, given that Los Angeles has a sizeable Latino and African American population, loss the election to a white candidate who "played the race card." We find that Villaraigosa's deracialized campaign was unsuccessful and evidenced by the fact that he received a small percentage (less than 20 percent) of the black vote and failed to mobilize a turnout of 50 percent or more of the Latino voting-age population. The goal of the paper is to draw possible implications for the theory of deracialization and the limitations of deracialization as an electoral strategy for candidates running for office in racially diverse cities.
 
Article
Throughout the 2008 Democratic primary, Senator Hillary Clinton, her supporters and advocates, feminist groups, and commentators accused the media of sexist coverage. Was Hillary Clinton treated differently in the media because of her gender? The authors attempt to answer this question by examining the forms of address that television newspeople use to refer to the Democratic primary candidates. The authors find that newspeople referred to Clinton more informally than her male competitors. This treatment stemmed from the gender of the broadcaster; males show gender bias in how they reference presidential candidates. The authors conclude with suggestions for addressing gender bias in news coverage.
 
Article
Using data from the American National Election Studies, this article addresses whether the Sarah Palin affected vote choice in 2008. Findings indicate not only that evaluations of Palin were a strong predictor of vote choice—even when controlling for confounding variables—but also that Palin’s effect on vote choice was the largest of any vice presidential candidate in elections examined dating back to 1980. Theoretically, the article offers support for the proposition that a running mate is an important short-term force affecting voting behavior. Substantively, the article suggests that Palin may have contributed to a loss of support among “swing voters.”
 
Distribution of Responses to Latent Questions
List Experiment Results: Mean Number of Troubling Items
List Experiment by Obama's Policies and Party Identification
Article
Social desirability effects make it difficult to learn voters’ racial attitudes. List experiments can tap sensitive issues without directly asking respondents to express overt opinions. The authors report on such an experiment about Barack Obama as the first black president, finding that 30 percent of white Americans were “troubled” by the prospect of Obama as the first black president. The authors examine policy and emotional underpinnings of these responses, finding that expressed emotions of anxiety and enthusiasm condition latent racial attitudes and racial policy beliefs especially for those exhibiting a social desirability bias. The results suggest that Obama’s victory despite this level of concern about race was at least in part a result of intense enthusiasm his campaign generated. This enthusiasm for Obama may have allowed some white voters to overcome latent concerns about his race. The research suggests emotions are critical in understanding racial attitudes.
 
Mean Perceptions of Palin’s Masculine and Feminine Traits by Experimental Condition 
Regressions on Palin's Feminine and Masculine Traits
Regressions on Palin's Ideology
Mean Perceptions of Palin’s Ideology by Experimental Condition 
Regression of Feelings toward Sarah Palin
Article
Scholars have documented the ways in which gender stereotypes harm the electoral prospects of female candidates. We know less about the factors that might mitigate the expression of these stereotypes. This question took on new and timely significance during the 2008 presidential election. As a virtual unknown, Sarah Palin leapt onto the national stage as the Republican vice-presidential nominee and there was a wide array of media coverage surrounding her candidacy. The literature suggests that a republican woman would not have the same handicaps as a democratic one, since partisan stereotypes might counteract gender stereotypes. In this study we explore what effect different media frames have on voters’ perception of Sarah Palin’s ideology and candidate traits. To explore these questions, we conducted an on-line experiment with a random sample of registered voters in LA County during the 2008 presidential election. Participants were assigned to a control group or a treatment group which read a short paragraph describing Sarah Palin as a mother, a social conservative, an executive, or on the attack against Barack Obama. We expect that descriptions that highlight more stereotypically feminine attributes, such as being a mother, will heighten gender trait and belief based stereotypes, while those that highlight more masculine attributes, such as being on the attack, will diminish them.
 
Predicted probability of Well Qualified American Bar Association rating given years as a federal district court judge (model 1) 
Ordered Logit Model of ABA Ratings 1977-2008 Using Matched Data (Model 1)
Article
In this paper, we (1) investigate what factors explain the ABA ratings of judicial nominees to the United States Courts of Appeals from 1985-2008 and (2) probe whether prospective Republican and/or conservative judges are systematically disadvantaged. We find both that, all else being equal, Democatic/ liberal nominees are more likely to receive the ABA's highest rating of "Well Qualified" than their Republican counterparts, but also that the ABA relies on more traditional measures of professional qualifications, such as prior experience as a judge or Circuit Court clerk, when rating nominees to the federal appellate courts. Our results lead us to conclude that the ABA should take affirmative steps to ensure liberal candidates are not being unconsciously favored and rated. In particular, our findings suggest that there is some systematic component of the evaluation process, possibly the use of the "judicial temperament" criterion, which lends itself to lower ratings of more conservative nominees. In evaluating judicial temperament, the ABA properly seeks to ensure that potential federal judges will approach each case with an open mind and a sense of fairness toward all parties, but our findings indicate that the Standing Committee should also guard against rating nominees based on their particular positions towards policies and legal doctrines which implicate issues of fairness and equal justice. Therefore, the Standing Committee should strive to ensure that its evaluations reflect a careful balance of both objective and subjective criteria, and that the different types of criterion are given appropriate weight.
 
Ordinary Least Squares Regression Analyses of None of the Above Voting in Nevada, 1976-2010 
Article
Elections send ambiguous signals to the political system, particularly when interpreting the meaning of various “nonvotes” (e.g., abstention, ballot spoiling, and roll-off). While a “none of the above” (NOTA) option may allow voters to better signal discontent, how NOTA voting is used is not well understood. The authors’ analysis of all races in Nevada, which has allowed for NOTA voting since 1976, suggests that NOTA voting is consistent with protest voting and limited information. Thus, while NOTA voting can be a less ambiguous signal of discontent than other nonvotes, the practice of NOTA voting is less clear.
 
Conditional effects of development aid on military spending.  
Development Aid, Regime Type, and Military Spending.
Two-stage least squares (2SLS) regression results.  
Two-Stage Least Squares Regression Results.
Effects of aid in high-threat and low-threat subsamples.  
Article
Research shows that foreign aid promotes economic development in democracies but not in autocracies. Although explanations for this phenomenon vary, a common theme is that autocracies are more likely to misuse aid. We provide evidence of such misuse, showing that autocracies are more likely than democracies to divert development aid to the military. Theoretically, we build on “selectorate” models in which autocrats respond to aid by contracting civil liberties. Because this strategy requires military capacity, autocracies but not democracies should spend aid on the military. We support this hypothesis empirically, providing further evidence that autocracies misuse foreign aid.
 
Article
The Republic’s account of the relation between talking about politics and doing politics illuminates the nature of political action. Plato’s Socrates argues that those who ought to govern are those who know about politics and who know what politics is about, since political things are images of ideas. Socrates’ alternative to democracy is thus an academic rather than an aristocratic elite—an elite of those who know. Yet the academic elite Plato imagined does not dispute the right of the people to decide between it, the aristocrats, and the men of the people.
 
Article
A large telephone survey conducted after the attacks of September 11, 2001, suggests that the willingness to tolerate discrimination varies significantly across domains, with a very high tolerance of discrimination against poorly educated immigrants and a strikingly low tolerance of discrimination against the genetically disadvantaged. Regardless of domain, tolerance is greater among men than among women. A survey conducted simultaneously over the World Wide Web, using volunteer panels, replicated the phone survey results and revealed an even larger sex gap. This finding suggests that a social desirability bias leads women to overstate and men to understate their tolerance of discrimination in public.
 
Article
Incorporating race into tactical spending for electoral gain, this article revisits the relative effects of vote production and vote retention on distributive politics. It investigates whether a “compassion strategy” to influence the electoral behavior of voters while being responsive to need-based social welfare demands affected federal discretionary grants to faith-based organizations (FBOs) during the administration of George W. Bush. The findings suggest that federal domestic social welfare funding of FBOs may have involved a combination of the tactical use of grants for both electoral purposes (i.e., vote production and vote retention) and the reduction of need among the states.
 
Article
The past decade has witnessed a proliferation of media stories about immigration as a result of increases in authorized and unauthorized immigration to the United States. Scholars know little about how this coverage influences political participation across different groups in society. This study employs an experimental design to test the effects of different media frames on immigration in spurring political participation among recent immigrant-rooted communities and non-immigrant-rooted communities. The authors find strong mobilizing effects among Latinos, particularly for frames that highlight social costs and national security concerns, and weak to no effects on Asians, African Americans, and whites.
 
Article
Why are the leaders in some U.S.-style legislatures more influential than others? This study uses individual-level data on lawmkers’ perceptions of their leaders’ influence to test three general theories of legislative power delegation: legislative leaders have no real power, simple collective action theory, and Conditional Party Government theory. These perceptions of speakers’ legislative influence are modeled with varying intercept, multilevel, ordered probit models. The analyses strongly support the simple collective action problem explanation of legislative leadership influence, in particular suggesting that collective problems caused by the internal dynamics of the legislative process drive the delegation of influence to leaders.
 
Parametric Accelerated Failure Time Analyses of Association Survival 
Article
Group populations take many different types of actions in order to influence government, but how those actions are received depends on the traits of group populations. This article uses data on national-level voluntary associations in the United States from 1974 to 1999 to investigate group survival and discuss how it affects representation. The results demonstrate the existence of density dependence, significant positive effects for group-level resources, group-level characteristics, and government attention on group survival. These findings also include counterintuitive significant negative effects for public attention suggesting that increases in public attention lead to group replacement rather than group survival.
 
Article
This article proposes a new cross-national thesis for judicial decision making. The judicial politicization theory posits that judges on highly politicized high courts will be more likely to decide cases using ideological and attitudinal factors than judges at less politicized courts. The theory holds that informal norms regarding judicial appointment by the executive are more important than the formal selection mechanism in determining whether a judiciary is highly or less politicized. The results show significant attitudinal judicial voting at each high court and strong support for the contention that judges on highly politicized courts are more likely to decide cases ideologically.
 
Article
The authors examine U.S. public attitudes regarding global climate change, addressing the puzzle of why support for governmental action on this front is tepid relative to what existing theories predict. Introducing the theoretical concept of relative sociotropic time horizons, the authors show that believers in Christian end-times theology are less likely to support policies designed to curb global warming than are other Americans. They then provide robustness checks by analyzing other policy attitudes. In so doing, the authors provide empirical evidence to suggest that citizens possessing shorter “shadows of the future” often resist policies trading short-term costs for hypothetical long-term benefits.
 
Article
Faced with the steady growth of technological operations in government, to what extent and in what way can citizen participation in administra tion be preserved? A century ago the distinction between citizen and official was slight, passage from one status to the other was easy. Now inexpert participation in whole blocks of administration has become im possible, the distinction between official and citizen is more definite and permanent, a bureaucracy has emerged out of the conditions of modern government.... The reconciliation of democratic institutions and a pro fessionalized bureaucracy ... is one of the major perplexities of the future. 1 Peer Reviewed http://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/2027.42/68317/2/10.1177_106591297803100404.pdf
 
Measuring Candidate Impact on Party Performance, 1997, 2002 and 2007 
Sex and Safety of Seat
Article
The passage of electoral gender quotas raises questions about why male elites would support policies that seemingly go against their self-interests. Recent work on France suggests that quota adoption is self-interested because male legislators benefit from alleged voter bias against female candidates. This article evaluates this explanation as a means for understanding quota adoption globally. It argues that the key actors are not legislators but political parties. Developing an alternative causal story centered on “party pragmatism,” it finds that decisions to introduce quotas are rational and consistent once a range of incentives—ideological, electoral, and strategic—are taken into account.
 
Article
This paper forwards a new Postmaterialist Trigger Theory (PTT) of the origins of bills of rights in stable, advanced democracies. Socially, such projects are linked to the postmaterialist growth of ‘cultural left’ forces such as civil libertarians and social equality seekers. Additionally, a focusing trigger providing an immediate political rationale for change is also generally required. This trigger determines the precise timing of any change and also influences its shape. Such a trigger need not be strategic or prospective in nature. Instead, political elites may embrace bill of rights genesis as part of a backward-looking 'aversive' reaction to prior negative political experiences during opposition.
 
Top-cited authors
Paul Burstein
  • University of Washington Seattle
Caroline Tolbert
  • University of Iowa
Kathleen Dolan
  • University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee
Scott Mcclurg
  • Southern Illinois University Carbondale
Monika Mcdermott
  • Fordham University