Thursday, October 16, 2008

The Irrational Electorate

"The ideal of rational voting behavior is further undermined by accumulating evidence that voters can be powerfully swayed by television advertising in the days just before an election. A major study of the 2000 presidential election by Richard Johnston, Michael Hagen, and Kathleen Hall Jamieson tracked prospective voters’ responses to changes in the volume and content of campaign ads as well as to news coverage and other aspects of the national campaign. Their analysis suggested that George W. Bush’s ­razor-­thin victory hinged crucially on the fact that he had more money to spend on television ads in battleground states in the final weeks of the campaign.13"

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