Questions persist regarding the robustness of cross-sectional estimates of effects of variables that are themselves endogenous to the participation process. On one hand, the consequences of working on a campaign have interesting implications for democratic society. Less benign, however, is the possibility that failure to control for reciprocal processes leads to biased estimates of the causes of campaign participation. I use a panel of Democratic and Republican contributors interviewed following each of the past three presidential elections (1996, 2000, and 2004) to explore the relationships between campaign participation and three variables typically parameterized as predictors of participation: receiving a contact, ideological extremism, and strength of party identification. The effect of strength of party identification on campaign participation proves robust; however, I find that nearly all of the associations between contacts and participation and ideological extremism and participation appear to extend from, not into, participation and past participation.
Political Behavior – Springer Journals
Published: Feb 5, 2008
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