Pos 6207 Mr. Craig Political Behavior Office: 209 Anderson Hall



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POS 6207 Mr. Craig

Political Behavior Office: 209 Anderson Hall

Spring 2013 Phone: 273-2377

Office Hours: Tuesday 12:00-3:00

and by appointment

sccraig@ufl.edu

www.clas.ufl.edu/users/sccraig/
Required texts:

Robert S. Erikson and Kent L. Tedin, American Public Opinion: Its Origins, Content, and Impact, 8th ed. (Longman, 2011).

Benjamin I. Page and Lawrence R. Jacobs, Class War? What Americans Really Think about Economic Inequality (University of Chicago Press, 2009).
Note: Erikson-Tedin is actually not a required text per se. It is listed here more as a reference that provides general background material on many of the topics covered in this course.
Other books that you might find useful:

Paul R. Abramson, John H. Aldrich, and David W. Rohde, Change and Continuity in the 2008 and 2010 Elections (CQ Press, 2012).

Russell J. Dalton, Citizen Politics: Public Opinion and Political Parties in Advanced Western Democracies, 5th ed. (CQ Press, 2008).

Christopher Ellis and James A. Stimson, Ideology in America (Cambridge University Press, 2012).

Robert S. Erikson and Christopher Wlezien, The Timeline of Presidential Elections: How Campaigns Do (and Do Not) Matter (University of Chicago Press, 2012).

Morris P. Fiorina, with Samuel J. Abrams and Jeremy C. Pope, Culture War? The Myth of a Polarized America, 3rd ed. (Pearson Longman 2011).

Donald Green, Bradley Palmquist, and Eric Schickler, Partisan Hearts and Minds: Political Parties and the Social Identities of Voters (Yale University Press, 2002).

Sasha Issenberg, The Victory Lab: The Secret Science of Winning Campaigns (Crown Publishers, 2012).

Richard G. Niemi, Herbert F. Weisberg, and David C. Kimball, eds., Controversies in Voting Behavior, 5th ed. (CQ Press, 2011).

Samuel L. Popkin, The Reasoning Voter: Communication and Persuasion in Presidential Campaigns, 2nd ed. (University of Chicago Press, 1994).

Paul M. Sniderman and Edward H. Stiglitz, The Reputational Premium: A Theory of Party Identification and Policy Reasoning (Princeton University Press, 2012).

John R. Zaller, The Nature and Origins of Mass Opinion (Cambridge University Press, 1992).


Note:

Page-Jacobs (2009), Dalton (2008), Green et al. (2002), Issenberg (2012, maybe), Popkin (1994), Zaller (1994), and most book titles listed throughout this syllabus have been placed on 2-hour reserve at Smathers Library.

Ellis-Stimson (2012), Erikson-Wlezien (2012), Sniderman-Stiglitz (2012) are available as Smathers e-books.

The latest editions of Erikson-Tedin (2011), Abramson et al. (2012), Fiorina et al. (2011), Niemi et al. (2011) are not available at Smathers.


Also: (1) most articles are available via the Smathers Library e-journal link (www.uflib.ufl.edu), or off-campus with your gatorlink account at www.uflib.ufl.edu/ufproxy.html; and (2) selected book chapters can be accessed through UF e-Learning Support Services at https://lss.at.ufl.edu/.
This course is designed to provide students with an introduction to the academic literature and major controversies regarding public opinion, voting behavior, and political participation – primarily, though not exclusively, in the United States. For example: How much do ordinary citizens know about politics and government? How complete is their understanding of important issues, and to what extent do preferences on those issues guide their voting choices? Why don’t more Americans participate in politics, either at the polls or in other ways? Do low participation rates mean that the United States (or any other country) is less “democratic” than its citizens would like to believe? Why have citizens become increasingly mistrustful of their governmental leaders and institutions? These are only a few of the questions that will be examined over the next few months.
Your grade will be determined according to the following criteria:
Part I. Attendance and participation (25 percent). Attendance matters, since you cannot participate if you’re not in class. However, the largest portion of this grade will reflect whether students make an informed (showing familiarity with assigned readings) contribution to class discussions.
Part II. Weekly essays (25 percent). Each student will complete six essays (each approximately 500 words in length) based on the last twelve topics (#3 through #14) outlined below. These essays should do one of the following:

  • provide a theoretical overview linking several (though not necessarily all) of the week’s readings;

  • identify a question left unanswered by the week’s readings, and briefly suggest what kind of research might be done to fill in the blanks;

  • provide a methodological critique of one or more of the week’s readings; or

  • discuss findings from studies of U.S. political behavior in a comparative context and/or vice versa.

Don't lose track of where you stand (in terms of meeting the quota of six) because there will be no opportunities for extra credit at the end.
Note: It is expected that all essays will represent original work by students (or, when the work of others is referenced, be properly cited). To ensure that this is the case, essays must be submitted to an online plagiarism service called turnitin.com. Here is how it works:
The first step is that you need to create a student profile:

1. go to www.turnitin.com

2. click on create user profile

3. fill in your personal email address

4. fill in your personal password

5. type of user: choose student

6. enter class ID (5896154) and password (behavior)

7. follow instructions


To log in after creating profile:

1. enter your personal email and password in the box on the upper right hand corner of the home page www.turnitin.com

2. click on Political Behavior (Graduate)

3. from there you can submit your paper, just like adding an attachment to an email.



4. be sure to get an electronic receipt; this will ensure that you are not penalized in the event that your essay is not properly logged in (no, it doesn’t happen often – but it happens).
Each essay has its own assignment folder. The procedure that you should follow is to (1) give me a hard copy of your essay during class on the specified date; and (2) submit an electronic copy to turnitin.com before 8 p.m. that same day. Any assignment that is late (either hard copy or electronic) will be docked a minimum of one letter grade. Any assignment that does not constitute original work by the author will be subject to penalties consistent with the UF Code of Student Conduct.
Part III. Paper/Exam/Teach/Memo. Each student also is required to do any two of the following (25 percent each, for a combined total of 50 percent):

  • Write a term paper, approximately 12-15 pages in length, that reviews some topic of your own choosing (selected in consultation with me), develops interesting hypotheses relating to that topic, and provides the outline of a research project appropriate for testing those hypotheses. The paper is due at noon on Friday, April 26. (Note: For some of you, especially the ph.d. types, the paper you do here can serve as the first stage of a project that you will further develop – and perhaps actually execute – in another seminar or at the dissertation stage. With that possibility in mind, you should feel free to consult with other professors about your topic, as appropriate.)




  • Complete a written take-home exam, based on material covered in class. There will be two questions similar to what students might see on a ph.d. qualifying exam in political behavior. Questions will be sent to students via email at noon on Thursday, April 25, and answers are due by noon on Friday, April 26.




  • Teach a seminar (ph.d. students only), with performance evaluated by all participants in the class based on clarity, thoroughness, and insights provided on the topic of the day. Those who wish to pursue this option must (a) declare by January 23 which seminar they would like to lead; and (b) give me an outline of the presentation by noon on the day of the seminar.




  • Prepare a campaign memo (campaigning students only), approximately 8-10 pages in length, that explains in layman’s terms how the political behavior literature informs some aspect of campaign strategy, tactics, or message. The idea here is to tell the candidate, for example, how the academic literature can help you (as general consultant) to (a) anticipate how certain kinds of people are likely to vote, and suggest ways of tilting the distribution of that vote in your favor; (b) understand or predict voter turnout, and how that might affect your campaign; (c) make smart decisions about how to utilize scarce resources (including but not limited to money); (d) shape your message for maximum impact; (e) deal with events, expected or unexpected, that might occur during the campaign; or (f) understand how the candidate’s strategic position (e.g., partisanship, incumbency, issues, primary challenge) affects his/her probability of success. This memo is due at noon on Friday, April 26.

Note: All term papers, take-home exams, and campaign memos must be submitted in both hard (to me) and electronic copy (to turnitin.com) by the date and time specified above. Failure to comply will result in a penalty of at least one letter grade, depending on the severity of the offense.

Students are bound by the UF Student Code of Conduct. Anyone who commits an act of academic dishonesty, such as cheating on exams or committing plagiarism on written assignments, will suffer appropriate sanctions and be referred to university authorities for further action.

Any student with a handicap or special need should notify me (and coordinate with Student Services at 202 Peabody Hall) as soon as possible at the beginning of the semester. Every effort will be made to accommodate your situation within the guidelines set forth by the university.

A class listserv has been established so that I can send you occasional announcements and keep you informed about any changes that might occur in the schedule. You are automatically on the list by virtue of being enrolled in this course. You must, however, be sure either to check the email in your gatorlink account on a regular basis, or to forward all gatorlink messages to an account that you use more frequently.



COURSE OUTLINE
Week 1 (Jan 8): Introduction: Let’s “Begin the Beguine” (Cole Porter)

“Politics is more difficult than physics.” (Albert Einstein)


Assigned Readings:

Erikson and Tedin, American Public Opinion, Chapter 1.

Russell J. Dalton and Hans-Dieter Klingemann, “Citizens and Political Behavior,” in Dalton and Klingemann, eds., The Oxford Handbook of Political Behavior (2007).
Week 2 (Jan 15): The American Electorate: Early Impressions . . . and They Weren’t Pretty

“Democracy substitutes election by the incompetent for appointment by the corrupt few.” (George Bernard Shaw)
Assigned Readings:

Erikson and Tedin, American Public Opinion, Chapter 2.

David W. Moore, The Opinion Makers: An Insider Exposes the Truth behind the Polls (2008), Chapters 1, 4 (pp. 1-17, 58-80).

Mark Blumenthal, “Can I Trust This Poll?” in Kirby Goidel, ed., Political Polling in the Digital Age (2011), Chapter 3, pp. 54-70.

Bernard Berelson et al., “Democratic Practice and Democratic Theory,” in Susan Welch and John Comer, eds., Public Opinion: Its Formation, Measurement, and Impact (1975; reprinted from Berelson et al., Voting, 1954).

Philip E. Converse, "The Nature of Belief Systems in Mass Publics," in David E. Apter, ed., Ideology and Discontent (1964).

Herbert McClosky, “Consensus and Ideology in American Politics,” American Political Science Review (June 1964).
Recommended Readings:

Bernard R. Berelson et al., Voting (1954).

Angus Campbell et al., The American Voter (1960 unabridged).

Angus Campbell et al., Elections and the Political Order (1966), Chapters 4, 5, 8.

Gabriel Almond and Sidney Verba, The Civic Culture (1963).

Philip E. Converse, "Of Time and Partisan Stability," Comparative Political Studies (July 1969).

V. O. Key, Jr., The Responsible Electorate (1966).

Anthony Downs, An Economic Theory of Democracy (1957).

Richard A. Brody and Benjamin I. Page, "Comment: The Assessment of Policy Voting," American Political Science Review (June 1972).

David Easton and Jack Dennis, Children in the Political System (1969).

M. Kent Jennings and Richard G. Niemi, The Political Character of Adolescence (1974).

Robert E. Lane, Political Ideology: Why the American Common Man Believes What He Does (1962).

Samuel A. Stouffer, Communism, Conformity, and Civil Liberties (1955).

James W. Prothro and Charles M. Grigg, "Fundamental Principles of Democracy: Bases of Agree-ment and Disagreement," Journal of Politics (May 1960).

John L. Sullivan et al., “An Alternative Conceptualization of Political Tolerance: Illusory Increases 1950s-1970s,” American Political Science Review (September 1979).
Week 3 (Jan 22): Voter Competence: How Stupid Are We?

“I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crises. The great point is to bring them the real facts.” (Abraham Lincoln)

“Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects.” (Will Rogers)
Assigned Readings:

Martin Gilens, “Two-Thirds Full? Citizen Competence and Democratic Governance,” Chapter 3 in Berinsky, ed., New Directions in Public Opinion.

Larry M. Bartels, “Homer Gets a Tax Cut: Inequality and Public Policy in the American Mind,” Perspectives on Politics (March 2005); Arthur Lupia et al., “Were Bush Tax Cut Supporters ‘Simply Ignorant?’ A Second Look at Conservatives and Liberals in ‘Homer Gets a Tax Cut,’” Perspectives on Politics (December 2007); Larry M. Bartels, “Homer Gets a Warm Hug: A Note on Ignorance and Extenuation,” Perspectives on Politics (December 2007).

Scott L. Althaus, "Information Effects in Collective Preferences," American Political Science Review (September 1998).

Richard R. Lau et al., “An Exploration of Correct Voting in Recent U. S. Presidential Elections,” American Journal of Political Science (April 2008).

Charles S. Taber and Milton Lodge, “Motivated Skepticism in the Evaluation of Political Beliefs,” American Journal of Political Science (July 2006).

Jennifer Jerit and Jason Barabas, “Partisan Perceptual Bias and the Information Environment,” Journal of Politics (July 2012).
Recommended Readings:

Michael X. Delli Carpini and Scott Keeter, What Americans Know about Politics and Why It Matters (1996).

Stephen C. Craig and Michael D. Martinez, “Voter Competence,” in Stephen C. Craig and David B. Hill, eds., The Electoral Challenge: Theory Meets Practice, 2nd ed., (2011), including response by Mark Blumenthal.

Stacy B. Gordon and Gary M. Segura, “Cross-National Variation in the Political Sophistication of Individuals: Capability or Choice?” Journal of Politics, (February 1997).

Benjamin Highton, “Revisiting the Relationship between Educational Attainment and Political Sophistication,” Journal of Politics (October 2009).

Jennifer Jerit, “Understanding the Knowledge Gap: The Role of Experts and Journalists,” Journal of Politics (April 2009).

Jason Barabas and Jennifer Jerit, “Estimating the Causal Effects of Media Coverage on Policy-Specific Knowledge,” American Journal of Political Science (January 2009).

Richard R. Lau and David P. Redlawsk, “Voting Correctly,” American Political Science Review (September 1997).

Ryan L. Claassen and Benjamin Highton, “Does Policy Debate Reduce Information Effects in Public Opinion? Analyzing the Evolution of Public Opinion on Health Care,” Journal of Politics (May 2006).

Cindy D. Kam and Stephen M. Utych, “Close Elections and Cognitive Engagement,” Journal of Politics (October 2011).


Week 4 (Jan 29): Ideology: Beyond Red vs. Blue

“A liberal is a conservative who has been arrested.” (Tom Wolfe)

“A conservative is a liberal who has been mugged.” (Unknown)
Assigned Readings:

Erikson and Tedin, American Public Opinion, Chapter 3.

Pamela Conover and Stanley Feldman, "The Origins and Meaning of Liberal/Conservative Self-Identifications," American Journal of Political Science (November 1981).

Christopher Ellis and James A. Stimson, “Pathways to Conservative Identification: The Politics of Ideological Contradiction in the United States,” in Paul M. Sniderman and Benjamin Highton, eds., Facing the Challenge of Democracy: Explorations in the Analysis of Public Opinion and Political Participation (2011).

David E. RePass, “Searching for Voters along the Liberal-Conservative Continuum: The Infrequent Ideologue and the Missing Middle,” The Forum (2008, Berkeley Electronic Press); http://www.bepress.com/forum/vol6/iss2/art5.

Jon Hurwitz and Mark Peffley. “How Are Foreign Policy Attitudes Structured? A Hierarchical Model,” American Political Science Review (December 1987).

Stanley Feldman and John Zaller, "The Political Culture of Ambivalence: Ideological Responses to the Welfare State," American Journal of Political Science (February 1992).
Recommended Readings:

James A. Stimson, Tides of Consent: How Public Opinion Shapes American Politics (2004).

Christopher Ellis and James A. Stimson, Ideology in America (2012). [Smathers Library e-book]

Shawn Treier and D. Sunshine Hillygus, “The Nature of Political Ideology in the Contemporary Electorate,” Public Opinion Quarterly (Winter 2009).

Paul Goren, “Political Sophistication and Policy Reasoning: A Reconsideration,” American Journal of Political Science, (July 2004).

Pamela Conover and Stanley Feldman, "How People Organize the Political World: A Schematic Model," American Journal of Political Science (February 1984).

Simon Zshirnt, “The Origins and Meaning of Liberal/Conservative Self-Identifications Revisited,” Political Behavior (December 2011).

Elizabeth Popp and Thomas J. Rudolph, “A Tale of Two Ideologies: Explaining Public Support for Economic Interventions,” Journal of Politics (July 2011).

William G. Jacoby, “Value Choices and American Public Opinion,” American Journal of Political Science (July 2006).

Stephen C. Craig et al., "Sometimes You Feel Like a Nut, Sometimes You Don't: Citizens' Ambivalence about Abortion," Political Psychology (June 2002).

Pew Research Center for the People and the Press, “Beyond Red vs. Blue: Political Typology,” report released May 4, 2011; http://people-press.org/files/legacy-pdf/Beyond-Red-vs-Blue-The-Political-Typology.pdf

John L. Sullivan et al., "An Alternative Conceptualization of Political Tolerance: Illusory Increases 1950s-1970s," American Political Science Review (September 1979).

James L. Gibson, “Intolerance and Political Repression in the United States: A Half Century after McCarthyism,” American Journal of Political Science (January 2008).
Week 5 (Feb 5). Partisanship: It’s My Party and I’ll Cry If I Want To

“Under democracy one party always devotes its chief energies to trying to prove that the other party is unfit to rule – and both commonly succeed, and are right.” (H. L. Mencken)

"The Democrats are the party of government activism, the party that says government can make you richer, smarter, taller, and get the chickweed out of your lawn. Republicans are the party that says government doesn't work, and then get elected and prove it." (P. J. O’Rourke)
Assigned Readings:

Morris P. Fiorina, Retrospective Voting in American National Elections (1981), Chapter 5.

Donald Green et al., Partisan Hearts and Minds: Political Parties and the Social Identities of Voters (2002), Chapter 2.

Marc J. Hetherington, "Resurgent Mass Partisanship: The Role of Elite Polarization," American Political Science Review (September 2001).

David B. Magleby et al., “The Myth of the Independent Voter,” in Paul M. Sniderman and Benja-min Highton, eds., Facing the Challenge of Democracy: Explorations in the Analysis of Public Opinion and Political Participation (2011).

Thomas M. Carsey and Geoffrey C. Layman, "Changing Sides or Changing Minds? Party Identification and Policy Preferences in the American Electorate," American Journal of Political Science (April 2006).

Benjamin Highton and Cindy D. Kam, “The Long-Term Dynamics of Partisanship and Issue Orientations,” Journal of Politics (January 2011).

Paul Goren et al., “Source Cues, Partisan Identities, and Political Value Expression,” American Journal of Political Science (October 2009).

Alan I. Abramowitz and Kyle L. Saunders, "Exploring the Bases of Partisanship in the American Electorate: Social Identity vs. Ideology," Political Research Quarterly (June 2006).
Recommended Readings:

Paul M. Sniderman and Edward H. Stiglitz, The Reputational Premium: A Theory of Party Identification and Policy Reasoning (2012). [Smathers Library e-book]

Richard Johnston, "Party Identification: Unmoved Mover or Sum of Preferences," Annual Review of Political Science (2006).

Paul Allen Beck and M. Kent Jennings, "Family Traditions, Political Periods, and the Development of Partisan Orientations," Journal of Politics (August 1991).

Logan Dancey and Paul Goren. “Party Identification, Issue Attitudes, and the Dynamics of Political Debate,” American Journal of Political Science (July 2010).

Wendy M. Rahn, "The Role of Partisan Stereotypes in Information Processing about Political Candidates," American Journal of Political Science (May 1993).

Brian J. Gaines et al., “Same Facts, Different Interpretations: Partisan Motivation and Opinion on Iraq,” Journal of Politics (November 2007).

Eric Groenendyk, “Justifying Party Identification: A Case of Identifying with the ‘Lesser of Two Evils,’” Political Behavior September 2012).

Peter K. Hatemi et al., “Is There a ‘Party’ in Your Genes?” Political Research Quarterly (September 2009).
Week 6 (Feb 12). Political Learning: What Shapes/Moves Public Opinion?

“You can say any foolish thing to a dog, and the dog will give you a look that says, ‘My God, you’re right. I never would’ve thought of that.” (Sean Connery)

“In all matters of opinion, our adversaries are insane.” (Oscar Wilde)
Assigned Readings:

Erikson and Tedin, American Public Opinion, Chapters 4, 5, 8.

M. Kent Jennings et al., “Politics across Generations: Family Transition Reexamined,” Journal of Politics (July 2009).

Benjamin I. Page et al., "What Moves Public Opinion?" American Political Science Review (March 1987).

Gabriel S. Lenz, “Learning and Opinion Change, Not Priming: Reconsidering the Priming Hypothesis,” American Journal of Political Science (October 2009).

Adam J. Berinsky, In Time of War: Understanding American Public Opinion from World War II to Iraq (2009), Chapter 5.

Thomas E. Nelson and Donald R. Kinder, "Issue Frames and Group-Centrism in American Public Opinion," Journal of Politics (November 1996).

Joseph Daniel Ura, and Christopher R. Ellis, “Partisan Moods: Polarization and the Dynamics of Mass Party Preferences,” Journal of Politics (January 2012).


Recommended Readings:

John R. Zaller, The Nature and Origins of Mass Opinion (1992).

Michael MacKuen and Courtney Brown, "Political Context and Attitude Change," American Political Science Review (June 1987).

Tom W. Rice and Jan L. Feldman, "Civic Culture and Democracy from Europe to America," Journal of Politics (November 1997).

Diana C. Mutz and Jeffery J. Mondak, "The Workplace as a Context for Cross-Cutting Political Discourse," Journal of Politics (February 2006).

David O. Sears and Nicholas A. Valentino, "Politics Matters: Political Events as Catalysts for Preadult Socialization," American Political Science Review (March 1997).

John Zaller, “The Myth of Massive Media Impact Revived: New Support for a Discredited Idea,” in Diana C. Mutz et al., eds, Political Persuasion and Attitude Change (1996).

James N. Druckman et al., “A Source of Bias in Public Opinion Stability,” American Political Science Review (May 2012).

Tim Groeling and Matthew A. Baum, “Crossing the Water’s Edge: Elite Rhetoric, Media Coverage, and the Rally-Round-the-Flag Phenomenon,” Journal of Politics (October 2008); also see Baum and Groeling, War Stories: The Causes and Consequences of Public Views of War (2010).

Scott L. Althaus and Kevin Coe, “Priming Patriots: Social Identity Processes and the Dynamics of Public Support for War,” Public Opinion Quarterly (Spring 2011).

Saundra K. Schneider and William G. Jacoby, "Elite Discourse and American Public Opinion: The Case of Welfare Spending," Political Research Quarterly (September 2005).

John G. Bullock, “Elite Influence on Public Opinion in an Informed Electorate,” American Political Science Review (August 2011).

Danny Hayes and Matt Guardino, “The Influence of Foreign Voices on U. S. Public Opinion,” American Journal of Political Science (October 2011).

John R. Alford et al., "Are Political Orientations Genetically Transmitted?" American Political Science Review (May 2005).


Week 7 (Feb 19). Social Groups: Demography Is Destiny . . . Or Not

“I am not a member of any organized political party, I’m a Democrat.” (Will Rogers)


Assigned Readings:

Erikson and Tedin, American Public Opinion, Chapter 7.

Pamela Johnston Conover, "The Influence of Group Identifications on Political Perception and Evaluation," Journal of Politics (August 1984).

Stuart N. Soroka and Christopher Wlezien, “On the Limits to Inequality in Representation,” PS: Political Science and Politics (April 2008); Joseph Daniel Ura and Christopher R. Ellis, “Income, Preferences, and the Dynamics of Policy Responsiveness,” PS: Political Science and Politics (October 2008); Martin Gilens, “Preference Gaps and Inequality in Representation,” PS: Political Science and Politics (April 2009).

David E. Campbell et al., “A Jump to the Right, A Step to the Left: Religion and Public Opinion,” in Adam J. Berinsky, ed., New Directions in Public Opinion (2012).

Cindy D. Kam and Donald R. Kinder, “Ethnocentrism as a Short-Term Force in the 2008 American Presidential Election,” Journal of Politics (April 2012).

Stephen P. Nicholson and Gary M. Segura, “Who’s the Party of the People? Economic Populism and the U.S. Public’s Beliefs About Political Parties,” Political Behavior (June 2012).
Recommended Readings:

Clem Brooks et al., “Cleavage-Based Voting Behavior in Cross-National Perspective: Evidence from Six Postwar Democracies,” Social Science Research (March 2006).

Vincent L. Hutchings and Nicholas A. Valentino, “The Centrality of Race in American Politics,” Annual Review of Political Science (2004).

Paula D. McClain et al., “Group Membership, Group Identity, and Group Consciousness: Measures of Racial Identity in American Politics?” Annual Review of Political Science (2009).

Jane Junn et al., “Asian American Public Opinion,” in Robert Y. Shapiro et al., eds., The Oxford Handbook of American Public Opinion and the Media (2011).

John A. Garcia, “Latino Public Opinion: Identity Politics and Policy Preferences,” in Barbara Norrander and Clyde Wilcox, eds., Understanding Public Opinion, 3rd ed. (2010).

Virginia Sapiro and Shauna L. Shames., “The Gender Basis of Public Opinion,” in Barbara Norrander and Clyde Wilcox, eds., Understanding Public Opinion, 3rd ed. (2010).

Barbara Norrander and Clyde Wilcox, “The Gender Gap in Ideology,” Political Behavior (December 2008).

Robert D. Putnam and David E. Campbell, American Grace: How Religion Divides and Unites Us (2010).

Kenneth D. Wald and David C. Leege, “Culture, Religion, and American Political Life,” in Corwin E. Smidt et al., eds., The Oxford Handbook of Religion and American Politics (2009).


Week 8 (Feb 26). Voting Behavior: Just Another Pretty Face?

"Vote: the instrument and symbol of a freeman's power to make a fool of himself and a wreck of his country."(Ambrose Bierce, The Devil's Dictionary)

“We would all like to vote for the best man but he is never a candidate.” (Frank McKinney Hubbard)
Assigned Readings:

Erikson and Tedin, American Public Opinion, Chapter 9.

Samuel L. Popkin, The Reasoning Voter: Communication and Persuasion in Presidential Campaigns, 2nd ed. (1994), Chapters 1-3.

Stephen Ansolabehere et al., “The Strength of Issues: Using Multiple Measures to Gauge Preference Stability, Ideological Constraint, and Issue Voting,” American Political Science Review (May 2008).

John H. Aldrich et al., "Foreign Affairs and Issue Voting: Do Presidential Candidates 'Waltz Before a Blind Audience?'" American Political Science Review (March 1989).

Gabriel S. Lenz and Chappell Lawson, “Looking the Part: Television Leads Less Informed Citizens to Vote Based on Candidates’ Appearance,” American Journal of Political Science (July 2011).

Walter J. Stone and Elizabeth N. Simas, “Candidate Valence and Ideological Positions in U.S. House Elections,” American Journal of Political Science (April 2010).

Allyson L. Holbrook et al., "Attitudes toward Presidential Candidates and Political Parties: Initial Optimism, Inertial First Impressions, and a Focus on Flaws," American Journal of Political Science (October 2001).

Ryan L. Claassen, “Direction Versus Proximity: Amassing Experimental Evidence,” American Politics Research (March 2009).
Recommended Readings:

Warren E. Miller and J. Merrill Shanks, The New American Voter (1996).

Richard Johnston et al., The 2000 Presidential Election and the Foundations of Party Politics (2004).

Richard R. Lau and David P. Redlawsk, How Voters Decide: Information Processing during Election Campaigns (2006).

Edward G. Carmines and James A. Stimson, "The Two Faces of Issue Voting," American Political Science Review (March 1980).

Jon A. Krosnick, "Government Policy and Citizen Passion: A Study of Issue Publics in Contemporary America," Political Behavior (March 1990).

D. Sunshine Hillygus and Todd G. Shields, “Moral Issues and Voter Decision Making in the 2004 Presidential Election,” PS: Political Science & Politics (April 2005).

Shana Kushner Gadarian, “Foreign Policy at the Ballot Box: How Citizens Use Foreign Policy to Judge and Choose Candidates,” Journal of Politics (October 2010).

Stephen A. Jessee, “Spatial Voting in the 2004 Presidential Election,” American Political Science Review (February 2009).

James Adams et al., "Representation in Congressional Campaigns: Evidence for Discounting/ Directional Voting in U. S. Senate Elections," Journal of Politics (May 2004).

Michael S. Lewis-Beck and Richard Nadeau, "Split-Ticket Voting: The Effects of Cognitive Madisonianism," Journal of Politics (February 2004).

Michael D. Henderson et al., “’Sour Grapes’ or Rational Voting? Voter Decision Making among Thwarted Primary Voters in 2008,” Public Opinion Quarterly (Fall 2010).

Thomas E. Mann and Raymond E. Wolfinger, "Candidates and Parties in Congressional Elections," American Political Science Review (September 1980).

Jeffery J. Mondak, "Competence, Integrity, and the Electoral Success of Congressional Incum-bents," Journal of Politics (November 1995).

Danny Hayes, “Trait Voting in U. S. Senate Elections,” American Politics Research (November 2010).
Week 9 (Mar 12). Retrospective Voting: It’s (Usually) the Economy, Stupid

“Recession is when your neighbor loses his job. Depression is when you lose yours. And recovery is when Jimmy Carter loses his.” (Ronald Reagan)

“Your federal government needs your money so that it can perform vital services for you that you would not think up yourself in a million years.” (Dave Barry)
Assigned Readings:

Paul R. Abramson et al., Change and Continuity in the 2008 and 2010 Elections (2012), Chapter 7.

Michael B. MacKuen et al., "Peasants or Bankers? The American Electorate and the U. S. Economy," American Political Science Review (September 1992).

Diana C. Mutz and Jeffery J. Mondak, "Dimensions of Sociotropic Behavior: Group-Based Judgments of Fairness and Well-Being," American Journal of Political Science (January 1997).

Christopher R. Berry and William G. Howell, “Accountability and Local Elections,” Journal of Politics (August 2007).

Thomas J. Rudolph and J. Tobin Grant, “An Attributional Model of Economic Voting: Evidence from the 2000 Presidential Election,” Political Research Quarterly (December 2002).

Alan S. Gerber and Gregory A. Huber, “Partisanship, Political Control, and Economic Assess-ments,” American Journal of Political Science (January 2010).

Christopher J. Anderson, “Economic Voting and Political Context: A Comparative Perspective,” Electoral Studies (June 2000).


Recommended Readings:

Morris P. Fiorina, Retrospective Voting in American National Elections (1981).

Raymond M. Duch and Randolph T. Stevenson, The Economic Vote: How Political and Economic Institutions Condition Election Results (2008). [not available at Smathers Library]

Gabriel S. Lenz, Follow the Leader? How Voters Respond to Politicians’ Policies and Performance (2012).

Michael S. Lewis-Beck and Mary Stegmaier, "Economic Models of Voting,” in Russell J. Dalton and Hans-Dieter Klingemann, eds., The Oxford Handbook of Political Behavior (2007).

Christopher J. Anderson, “The End of Economic Voting? Contingency Dilemmas and the Limits of Democratic Accountability,” Annual Review of Political Science (2007).

Richard Nadeau and Michael S. Lewis-Beck, "National Economic Voting in U. S. Presidential Elections," Journal of Politics (February 2001).

John R. Wright, “Unemployment and the Democratic Electoral Advantage,” American Political Science Review (November 2012).

Pamela Johnston Conover and Stanley Feldman, "Emotional Reactions to the Economy: I'm Mad as Hell and I'm Not Going to Take It Anymore," American Journal of Political Science (February 1986).

Edward R. Tufte, "Determinants of the Outcomes of Midterm Congressional Elections," American Political Science Review (September 1975).

Brown, Adam R. 2010. “Are Governors Responsible for the State Economy? Partisanship, Blame, and Divided Federalism.” Journal of Politics. 72 (July): 605-615.

James E. Campbell et al., “The Theory of Conditional Retrospective Voting: Does the Presidential Record Matter Less in Open-Seat Elections?” Journal of Politics (October 2010).

James Tilley and Sara B. Hobolt, “Is the Government to Blame? An Experimental Test of How Partisanship Shapes Perceptions of Performance and Responsibility,” Journal of Politics (April 2011).

David R. Jones, “Partisan Polarization and Congressional Accountability in House Elections,” American Journal of Political Science (April 2010).

G. Bingham Powell and Guy D. Whitten, "A Cross-National Analysis of Economic Voting: Taking Account of the Political Context," American Journal of Political Science (May 1993).
Week 10 (Mar 19). Polarization/Realignment: Can’t We All Just Get Along?

“Conservative, n: A statesman who is enamored of existing evils, as distinguished from the Liberal who wishes to replace them with others.” (Ambrose Bierce, The Devil's Dictionary)

“Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it whether it exists or not, diagnosing it incorrectly, and applying the wrong remedy.” (Ernest Benn)
Assigned Readings:

Geoffrey C. Layman et al., “Activists and Conflict Extension in American Party Politics. American Political Science Review (May 2010.

Alan I. Abramowitz and Kyle L. Saunders, “Is Polarization a Myth?”; Morris P. Fiorina et al., “Polarization and the American Public: Misconceptions and Misreadings”; Abramowitz, “The 2008 Election: Polarization Continues”; Fiorina and Samuel J. Adams, “Where’s the Polarization?” – all of the above in Richard G. Niemi et al., Controversies in Voting Behavior, 5th ed. (2011).

Stephen Ansolabehere et al., “Purple America,” in Richard G. Niemi et al., Controversies in Voting Behavior, 5th ed. (2011).

Laura Stoker  and M. Kent Jennings, "Of Time and the Development of Partisan Polariza-tion," American Journal of Political Science (July 2008).

Shanto Iyengar et al., “Affect, Not Ideology: A Social Identity Perspective on Polarization,” Public Opinion Quarterly (Fall 2012).


Recommended Readings:

James L. Sundquist, Dynamics of the Party System, revised edition (1983).

Peter F. Nardulli, "The Concept of a Critical Realignment, Electoral Behavior, and Political Change," American Political Science Review (March 1995).

Merrill, Samuel, III, Bernard Grofman, and Thomas L. Brunell, “Cycles in American National Electoral Politics, 1854-2006: Statistical Evidence and an Explanatory Model,” American Political Science Review (February 2008).

Edward G. Carmines and James A. Stimson, "On the Structure and Sequence of Issue Evolution," American Political Science Review (September 1986).

Greg D. Adams, "Abortion: Evidence of an Issue Evolution," American Journal of Political Science (July 1997).

Morris P. Fiorina, with Samuel J. Abrams and Jeremy C. Pope, Culture War? The Myth of a Polarized America, 3rd ed. (2011). [this edition not available at Smathers Library]

Alan I. Abramowitz, The Disappearing Center: Engaged Citizens, Polarization, and American Democracy (2010).

Matthew Levendusky, The Partisan Sort: How Liberals Became Democrats and Conservatives Became Republicans (2009). [not available at Smathers Library]

Andrew Gelman et al., Red State, Blue State, Rich State, Poor State: Why Americans Vote the Way They Do, expanded edition (2010). [availability at Smathers Library uncertain]



Edward J. Carmines and Michael W. Wagner, "Political Issues and Party Alignments: Assessing the Issue Evolution Perspective," Annual Review of Political Science (2006).

Ryan L. Claassen, Ryan L., and Benjamin Highton, “Policy Polarization among Party Elites and the Significance of Political Awareness in the Mass Public.” Political Research Quarterly (September 2009).

Matthew S. Levendusdy and Jeremy C. Pope, “Red States Vs. Blue States: Going Beyond the Mean,” Public Opinion Quarterly (2011).

Larry M. Bartels, "What's the Matter with What's the Matter with Kansas?" American Political Science Association (2005; see http://www.princeton.edu/~bartels/kansas.pdf).


Week 11 (Mar 26). Campaign Effects: Playing to Win

“Most elections are decided before the campaign even begins.” (James A. Farley)


Assigned Readings:

John Sides and Jake Haselswerdt, “Campaigns and Elections,” in Berinsky, ed., New Directions in Public Opinion.

Andrew Gelman and Gary King, “Why Are American Presidential Election Campaign Polls So Variable When Votes Are So Predictable?” British Journal of Political Science (October 1993).

Daron R. Shaw, “A Study of Presidential Campaign Event Effects from 1952 to 1992," Journal of Politics (May 1999).

Kim L. Fridkin and Patrick J. Kenney, “The Role of Candidate Traits in Campaigns,” Journal of Politics (January 2011).

Alan S. Gerber et al., “How Large and Long-lasting Are the Persuasive Effects of Televised Campaign Ads? Results from a Randomized Field Experiment.” American Political Science Review (February 2011).

Richard R. Lau and Ivy Brown Rovner, “Negative Campaigning,” in Annual Review of Political Science (2009).

Deborah Jordan Brooks, and John G. Geer, “Beyond Negativity: The Effects of Incivility on the Electorate,” American Journal of Political Science (January 2007).

R. Michael Alvarez et al., “Mobilizing Pasadena Democrats: Measuring the Effects of Partisan Campaign Contacts,” Journal of Politics (January 2010).

See Week #13 for additional readings on the effects of voter mobilization and campaign advertising.


Recommended Readings:

Thomas M. Holbrook, Do Campaigns Matter? (1996).

Allan J. Lichtman, Predicting the Next President: The Keys to the White House 2012 (2012). [not available at Smathers Library]

Robert S. Erikson and Christopher Wlezien, The Timeline of Presidential Elections: How Campaigns Do (and Do Not) Matter (2012).

Sasha Issenberg, The Victory Lab: The Secret Science of Winning Campaigns (2012).

Daron R. Shaw, “The Effect of TV Ads and Candidate Appearances on Statewide Presidential Votes, 1988-96,” American Political Science Review (June 1999).

Kim L. Fridkin et al., “Capturing the Power of a Campaign Event: The 2004 Presidential Debate in Tempe,” Journal of Politics (August 2007).

Michael M. Franz, “Political Advertising,” in Stephen C. Craig and David B. Hills, eds., The Electoral Challenge: Theory Meets Practice, 2nd ed. (2011); including responses by Mike Murphy and David B. Hill.

Gregory A. Huber and Kevin Arceneaux, “Identifying the Persuasive Effects of Presidential Advertising,” American Journal of Political Science (October 2007).

James N. Druckman et al., “Campaign Communications in U. S. Congressional Elections,” American Political Science Review (August 2009).

D. Sunshine Hillygus and Todd G. Shields, The Persuadable Voter: Wedge Issues in Presidential Campaigns (2008).

Kim L. Fridkin and Patrick J. Kenney, “Variability in Citizens’ Reactions to Different Types of Negative Campaigns,” American Journal of Political Science (April 2011).

Daniel Stevens et al., “What's Good for the Goose is Bad for the Gander: Negative Political Advertising, Partisanship, and Turnout,” Journal of Politics (April 2008).

Yanna Krupnikov, “When Does Negativity Demobilize? Tracing the Conditional Effect of Negative Campaigning on Voter Turnout,” American Journal of Political Science (October 2011).

John Sides and Andrew Karch, “Messages that Mobilize? Issue Publics and the Content of Campaign Advertising,” Journal of Politics (April 2008).

Janet M. Box-Steffensmeier et al., “The Aggregate Dynamics of Campaigns,” Journal of Politics (January 2009).


Week 12 (Apr 2). Issue Opinions . . . Are a Dime a Dozen

“I have opinions of my own, strong opinions, but I don’t always agree with them.” (George H. W. Bush)


Assigned Readings:

Benjamin I. Page and Lawrence R. Jacobs, Class War? What Americans Really Think about Economic Inequality (2009).

Mitchell Killian and Clyde Wilcox,“Do Abortion Attitudes Lead to Party Switching?” Political Research Quarterly (December 2008).

Stephen C. Craig et al., “Core Values, Value Conflict, and Citizens’ Ambivalence about Gay Rights,” Political Research Quarterly (March 2005).

Nicholas A. Valentino and David O. Sears, “Old Times There Are Not Forgotten: Race and Partisan Realignment in the Contemporary South,” American Journal of Political Science (July 2005).

Adam J. Berinsky, “Public Opinion and the Iraq War,” in Barbara Norrander and Clyde Wilcox, eds., Understanding Public Opinion, 3rd ed. (2010).

Marc J. Hetherington, and Elizabeth Suhay, “Authoritarianism, Threat, and Americans’ Support for the War on Terror,” American Journal of Political Science (July 2011).
Recommended Readings:

Adam J. Berinsky, “Silent Voices: Social Welfare Policy Opinions and Political Equality in America,” American Journal of Political Science (April 2002).

Greg D. Adams, “Abortion: Evidence of an Issue Evolution,” American Journal of Political Science (July 1997).

Clyde Wilcox and Patrick Carr, “The Puzzling Case of the Abortion Attitudes of the Millenial Generation,” in Barbara Norrander and Clyde Wilcox, eds., Understanding Public Opinion, 3rd ed. (2010).

Laura R. Olson et al., “Religion and Public Opinion about Same-Sex Marriage,” Social Science Quarterly (June 2006).

Nancy Burns and Katherine Gallagher, “Public Opinion on Gender Issues: The Politics of Equity and Roles,” Annual Review of Political Science (2010).

Christopher Tarman and David O. Sears, “The Conceptualization and Measurement of Symbolic Racism,” Journal of Politics (August 2005).

Michael D. Martinez and Stephen C. Craig, “Race and 2008 Presidential Politics in Florida: A List Experiment,” The Forum (2010, Berkeley Electronic Press), http://www.bepress.com/forum/ vol8/iss2/art4.

David P. Redlawsk etl al., “Voters, Emotions, and Race in 2008: Obama as the First Black Presi-dent,” Political Research Quarterly (December 2010).

Darren W. Davis, Negative Liberty: Public Opinion and the Terrorist Attacks on America (2007).


Week 13 (Apr 9). Turnout and Participation: How to Be a Good Citizen

“A low voter turnout is an indication of fewer people going to the polls.” (George W. Bush)



“Don’t vote. It only encourages them.” (Unknown)
Assigned Readings:

Sidney Verba et al., “Citizen Activity: Who Participates? What Do They Say?” American Political Science Review (June 1993).

James H. Fowler and Cindy D. Kam, “Beyond the Self: Social Identity, Altruism, and Political Participation,” Journal of Politics (August 2007).

Alan S. Gerber et al., “Personality Traits and Participation in Political Processes,” Journal of Politics (July 2011).

Cindy D. Kam and Carl L. Palmer, “Reconsidering the Effects of Education on Political Participation,” Journal of Politics (July 2008).

Thomas G. Hansford and Brad T. Gomez, “Estimating the Electoral Effects of Voter Turnout,” American Political Science Review (May 2010).

Paul Freedman et al., “Campaign Advertising and Democratic Citizenship,” American Journal of Political Science (October 2004).

David W. Nickerson et al., “Partisan Mobilization Campaigns in the Field: Results from a Statewide Turnout Experiment in Michigan,” Political Research Quarterly (March 2006).

C. Bingham Powell, Jr., “American Voter Turnout in Comparative Perspective,” American Political Science Review (March 1986)..
Recommended Readings:

Sidney Verba and Norman H. Nie, Participation in America (1972); also see Verba et al., Political Participation and Political Equality (1978).

Sidney Verba et al., Voice and Equality: Civic Volunteerism in American Politics (1995).

Paul Allen Beck and M. Kent Jennings, “Pathways to Participation,” American Political Science Review (March 1982).

Russell J. Dalton, The Good Citizen: How a Younger Generation Is Reshaping American Politics, revised edition (2009).

Robert D. Putnam, “Tuning In, Turning Out: The Strange Disappearance of Social Capital in America,” PS: Political Science and Politics (December 1995) also see Putnam,, Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community (2000).

James H. Fowler et al., “Genetic Variation in Political Participation.” American Political Science Review (May 2008).

Nicholas A. Valentino et al., “Election Night’s Alright for Fighting: The Role of Emotions in Political Participation,” Journal of Politics (January 2011).

André Blais, “What Affects Voter Turnout?” Annual Review of Political Science, vol. 9 (2006).

Ken Goldstein and Paul Freedman, “Campaign Advertising and Voter Turnout: New Evidence for a Stimulation Effect,” Journal of Politics (August 2002).

Alan S. Gerber and Todd Rogers, “Descriptive Social Norms and Motivation to Vote: Everybody’s Voting and So Should You,” Journal of Politics (January 2009).

Michael D. Martinez and Jeff Gill, “The Effects of Turnout on Partisan Outcomes in U. S. Presidential Elections, 1960-2000,” Journal of Politics (November 2005).

Jack Citrin et al., “What If Everyone Voted? Simulating the Impact of Increased Turnout in Senate Elections,” American Journal of Political Science (January 2003).

Brad T. Gomez et al., “The Republicans Should Pray for Rain: Weather, Turnout, and Voting in U. S. Presidential Elections,” Journal of Politics (August 2007).

Erik J. Engstrom, “The Rise and Decline of Turnout in Congressional Elections: Electoral Institutions, Competition, and Strategic Mobilization,” American Journal of Political Science (April 2012).
Week 14 (Apr 16). Representation and Linkage: The Rulers and the Ruled

“Politicians are the same all over. They promise to build a bridge even where there is no river.” (Nikita Krushchev)

“Suppose you were an idiot and suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself.” (Mark Twain)

“The word 'politics' is derived from the word 'poly,' meaning 'many,' and the word 'ticks,' meaning 'blood sucking parasites.' (Larry Hardiman)
Assigned Readings:

Erikson and Tedin, American Public Opinion, Chapter 6, 10, 11.

Benjamin I. Page and Robert Y. Shapiro, “Effects of Public Opinion on Policy,” American Political Science Review (March 1983).

Bryon D. Jones et al., “Representation and American Governing Institutions,” Journal of Politics (January 2009).

John Griffin, “Voting Power, Policy Representation, and Disparities in Voting’s Rewards,” Journal of Politics (January 2013).

John R. Hibbing and Elizabeth Theiss-Morse, “Process Preferences and American Politics: What the People Want Government to Be,” American Political Science Review. 95 (March 2001).

Marc J. Hetherington, “How Trust Matters: The Changing Political Relevance of Political Trust,” American Journal of Political Science (April 2012).

Diana C. Mutz and Byron Reeves, “The New Videomalaise: Effects of Televised Incivility on Political Trust,” American Political Science Review (February 2005).
Recommended Readings:

Lawrence R. Jacobs and Robert Y. Shapiro, Politicians Don't Pander: Political Manipulation and the Loss of Democratic Responsiveness (2000).

Warren E. Miller and Donald E. Stokes, “Constituency Influence in Congress,” American Political Science Review (March 1963); reprinted as Chapter 16 in Elections and the Political Order.

Patrick Flavin, “Income Inequality and Policy Representation in the American States,” American Politics Research (January 2012).

James Fowler, “Dynamic Responsiveness in the U. S. Senate,” American Journal of Political Science (April 2005).

Mark A. Smith, “Public Opinion, Elections, and Representation within a Market Economy: Does the Structural Power of Business Undermine Popular Sovereignty?” American Journal of Political Science (July 1999).

Joseph Bafumi and Michael C. Herron, “Leapfrog Representation and Extremism: A Study of American Voters and Their Members in Congress,” American Political Science Review (August 2010).

Stephen Ansolabehere and Philip Edward Jones, “Constituents’ Responses to Congressional Roll-Call Voting,” American Journal of Political Science (July 2010).

Christopher J. Casillas et al., “How Public Opinion Constrains the U.S. Supreme Court,” American Journal of Political Science (January 2011).

John R. Hibbing and Elizabeth Thiess-Morse, Congress as Public Enemy (1995).

Marc J. Hetherington, Why Trust Matters: Declining Political Trust and the Demise of American Liberalism (2005); also see Hetherington, “The Political Relevance of Political Trust,” American Political Science Review (December 1998).

Thomas J. Rudolph and Jillian Evans, “Political Trust, Ideology, and Public Support for Government Spending,” American Journal of Political Science (July 2005).

Marc J. Hetherington and Thomas J. Rudolph, “Priming, Performance, and the Dynamics of Political Trust,” Journal of Politics (April 2008).

Luke Keele, “Social Capital and the Dynamics of Trust in Government,” American Journal of Political Science (April 2007).

Timothy E. Cook and Paul Gronke, “The Skeptical American: Revisiting the Meanings of Trust in Government and Confidence in Institutions,” Journal of Politics (August 2005).

Luke Keele, “The Authorities Really Do Matter: Party Control and Trust in Government,” Journal of Politics (August 2005).

Robert A. Jackson et al., “Examining the Possible Corrosive Impact of Negative Advertising on Citizens' Attitudes toward Politics,” Political Research Quarterly (March 2009).

Richard Forgette and Jonathan S. Morris, “High-Conflict Television News and Public Opinion,” Political Research Quarterly (September 2006).

Kevin B. Smith et al., “Evolutionary Theory and Political Leadership: Why Certain People Do Not Trust Decision Makers,” Journal of Politics (May 2007).



Joshua J. Dyck, “Political Distrust and Conservative Voting in Ballot Measure Elections,” Political Research Quarterly (September 2010).


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