The Supreme Court has addressed capital punishment and affirmative action many times and, as a result, has had sweeping policymaking effects. For that reason, we argue that black opinion on capital punishment and affirmative action will be shaped by diffuse support for the Court. We also recognize the important role of group-centric forces in shaping black opinion. We find that diffuse support for the Court leads blacks with lower levels of race consciousness to be more supportive of capital punishment and less supportive of affirmative action, positions in line with the Court's decisions on these issues but contrary to black interests. The Court, however, is not able to throw its cloak of legitimacy around its policy position for blacks with the highest levels of group consciousness.
Political Behavior – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 7, 2004
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