Encouraging Political Defection: The Role of Personal Discussion Networks in Partisan Desertions to the Opposition Party and Perot Votes in 1992

Encouraging Political Defection: The Role of Personal Discussion Networks in Partisan Desertions... Drawing on data from a unique study of the 1992 American presidential election, this article demonstrates that personal discussion networks influence voting behavior, independent of candidate evaluations and partisanship. These social networks encouraged two different kinds of defections from otherwise-expected behavior. People were more likely to vote for Perot if their personal discussants supported him and to convert preferences for him into a Perot vote on election day. Partisans also were more likely to defect to the other major party if their discussion network failed to fully support the candidate of their own party. These results withstood controls for candidate evaluations and partisanship as well as for selective exposure to discussants and selective perception of their preferences. They show the importance of adding social context to personal attitudes, interests, and partisanship in explaining voting behavior. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Political Behavior Springer Journals

Encouraging Political Defection: The Role of Personal Discussion Networks in Partisan Desertions to the Opposition Party and Perot Votes in 1992

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Publisher
Springer Journals
Copyright
Copyright © 2002 by Plenum Publishing Corporation
Subject
Political Science and International Relations; Political Science; Sociology, general
ISSN
0190-9320
eISSN
1573-6687
D.O.I.
10.1023/A:1022549726887
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Drawing on data from a unique study of the 1992 American presidential election, this article demonstrates that personal discussion networks influence voting behavior, independent of candidate evaluations and partisanship. These social networks encouraged two different kinds of defections from otherwise-expected behavior. People were more likely to vote for Perot if their personal discussants supported him and to convert preferences for him into a Perot vote on election day. Partisans also were more likely to defect to the other major party if their discussion network failed to fully support the candidate of their own party. These results withstood controls for candidate evaluations and partisanship as well as for selective exposure to discussants and selective perception of their preferences. They show the importance of adding social context to personal attitudes, interests, and partisanship in explaining voting behavior.

Journal

Political BehaviorSpringer Journals

Published: Oct 10, 2004

References

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