Values, Frames, and Persuasion in Presidential Nomination Campaigns
Cite this article as: Barker, D.C. Polit Behav (2005) 27: 375. doi:10.1007/s11109-005-8145-4
This paper examines the persuasability of rhetorical value framing within a presidential nominating campaign, in an effort to understand how values and value-laden language may provide useful signals in electoral contexts where partisan cues are absent. Relying on a survey-experiment conducted during the 2000 Republican nomination campaign, I evaluate the relative persuasiveness of arguments framed in either individualistic or egalitarian terms. Drawing upon an “active-receiver” model of framing effects, I posit that Republican primary voters respond more readily to candidates when they use individualistic frames than when they use egalitarian frames, because individualism is a more “chronically accessible” value construct for Republicans. Furthermore, I hypothesize that this dynamic is particularly pronounced among more educated respondents, who have been trained to recognize abstract value cues and automatically apply them to applied political contexts. The experimental findings support these hypotheses.
Keywords values framing persuasion primaries nominations partisanship rhetoric communication campaigns survey experiments education References Abramowitz, , Alan, , Saunders, , Kyle, L. 1998 Ideological realignment in the U.S. electorate Journal of Politics 60 634 652 Google Scholar Abramson, , Paul, , Aldrich, , John, , Paolino, , Phil, , David, , Rohde, 1992 ‘Sophisticated Voting’ in the 1988 presidential primaries American Political Science Review 86 55 69 Google Scholar Barker David, C. 2002Rushed to Judgment: Talk Radio, Persuasion, and American Political Behavior Columbia University Press New York Google Scholar
Barker, David C., and Lawrence, Adam B. (2006) (forthcoming). Media favoritism and presidential nominations: reviving the direct effects model.
Bartels, , Larry, 1988The Dynamics of Presidential Primaries Princeton University Press Princeton, NJ Google Scholar
Brambor, Thomas, Clark, William R., and Golder, Matt. (2002). Understanding interaction models: what we thought we knew but obviously didn’t. Unpublished manuscript. Department of Politics, New York University
Brewer, , Paul, R. 2001 Value words and lizard brains: do citizens deliberate about appeals to their core values? Political Psychology 22 45 64 Google Scholar Chaiken, , Shelly, 1980 Heuristic versus systematic information processing in the use of source versus message cues in persuasion Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 39 752 766 Google Scholar Chaiken, S., Liberman, A., Eagly, A.H. 1989 Heuristic and systematic information processing within and beyond the persuasion context Uleman, J.S. Bargh, J.A. eds. Unintended Thought Guilford Press New York 212 252 Google Scholar Chong, , Dennis, 1996 Creating common frames of reference on political issues Mutz Diana, C. Paul Sniderman, M. Brody Richard, A. eds. Political persuasion and attitude change University of Michigan Press Ann Arbor, MI 195 224 Google Scholar Cobb, , Michael, D., Kuklinski, , James, H. 1997 Changing minds: political arguments and political persuasion American Journal of Political Science 41 88 121 Google Scholar Delli, , Carpini, , Michael, X., Keeter, , Scott, 1993 Measuring political knowledge: putting first things first American Journal of Political Science 28 95 126 Google Scholar Druckman, , James, 2001 On the limits of framing effects: who can frame? Journal of Politics 63 1041 1067 CrossRef Google Scholar Fazio, R. 1986 How do attitudes guide behavior? Sorrentino, R. Higgins, E. eds. Handbook of motivation and cognition: foundations of social behavior Guilford Press New York Google Scholar Feldman, , Stanley, 1988 Structure and consistency in public opinion: the role of core beliefs and values American Journal of Political Science 32 416 440 Google Scholar
Feldman, Stanley. (2003). Values, ideology, and the structure of political attitudes. In: Sears, David O., Huddy Leonie, and Jervis Robert (eds.),
Oxford Handbook of Political Psychology. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Feldman, S, Steenbergen, Marco R. 2001 The humanitarian foundation of public support for social welfare American Journal of Political Science 45 658 677 Google Scholar Finkel, Steven 1993 Reexamining the minimal effects model in recent presidential campaigns Journal of Politics 55 1 21 Google Scholar Gelman, Andrew, King, Gary 1993 Why are American presidential election campaign polls so variable when votes are so predictable? British Journal of Political Science 23 409 51 CrossRef Google Scholar Gomez, Brad T., Wilson, J. Matthew 2001 Political sophistication and economic voting in the American electorate: a theory of heterogeneous attribution American Journal of Political Science. 45 899 914 Google Scholar Goren, Paul 2000 Political expertise and principled political thought Political Research Quarterly 53 117 136 Google Scholar Hochschild, Jennifer 1981What’s Fair? American Beliefs about Distributive Justice Harvard University Press Cambridge Google Scholar Holbrook, Thomas M 1996Do Campaigns Matter? Sage Thousand Oaks, CA Google Scholar Hurwitz, Jon, Peffley, Mark 1987 How are foreign policy attitudes structured?: a hierarchical model American Political Science Review 81 1099 1120 Google Scholar Iyengar, Shanto 1991Is anyone responsible? University of Chicago Press Chicago Google Scholar Iyengar, Shanto, Kinder, Donald R. 1987News that Matters University of Chicago Press Chicago, IL Google Scholar
Jaccard, James, Turrisi, Robert, and Wan, Choi K. (1990). Interaction Effects in Multiple Regression (Quantitative Applications in the Social Sciences #72). Newbury Park: Sage.
Jacoby, William G. 2000 Issue framing and public opinion on government spending American Journal of Political Science 44 750 67 Google Scholar Katz, I., Hass, R. G. 1988 Racial ambivalence and American value conflict: correlational and priming studies of dual cognitive structures Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 55 892 905 CrossRef Google Scholar Kerlinger, F. N. 1984Liberalism and conservatism: The nature and structure of social attitudes Erlbaum Hillsdale, NJ Google Scholar Kluckhohn, C. 1951 Values and value–orientations in the theory of action Parsons, T. Shils, E. eds. Toward a general theory of action Harvard University Press Cambridge, MA Google Scholar Krosnick, Jon A., Kinder, Donald R. 1990 Altering the foundations of support for the president through priming American Political Science Review 84 497 512 Google Scholar Lakoff, George 2002Moral politics University of Chicago Press Chicago, IL Google Scholar Lau, Richard R. 1989 Construct accessibility and electoral choice Political Behavior 11 5 32 CrossRef Google Scholar Lau, Richard R., Sigelman, Lee, Heldman, Caroline, Babbitt, Paul 1999 The effects of negative political advertisements: a meta–analytic assessment American Political Science Review 93 851 875 Google Scholar Layman, Geoffrey 2001The Great Divide: Religious and Cultural Conflict in American Party Politics Columbia University Press New York Google Scholar Long Scott, J. 1997Regression Models for Categorical and Limited Dependent Variables Sage Publications Thousand Oaks, CA Google Scholar Luskin, Robert 1987 Measuring political sophistication American Journal of Political Science 31 856 899 Google Scholar McClosky, H., Zaller, J. 1984The American Ethos: Public Attitudes toward Capitalism and Democracy Harvard University Press Cambridge, MA Google Scholar Miller, Joanne M., Krosnick, Jon A. 1996 News media impact on the ingredients of presidential evaluations: a program of research on the priming hypothesis Diana, Mutz Sniderman, Paul M. Brody, Richard A. eds. Political persuasion and attitude change University of Michigan Press Ann Arbor, MI Google Scholar Mutz, Diana C. Sniderman, Paul M. Brody, Richard A. eds. 1996Political Persuasion and Attitude Change University of Michigan Press Ann Arbor, MI Google Scholar Nelson, Thomas E., Clawson, Rosalee A., Oxley, Zoe M. 1997 Media framing of a civil liberties conflict and its effect on tolerance American Political Science Review 91 567 584 Google Scholar Norpoth, Helmut, Lodge, Miltion 1985 The difference between attitudes and nonattitudes in the mass public: just measurements? American Journal of Political Science 29 291 307 Google Scholar Paolino, Philip, Shaw, Daron R. 2001 Lifting the hood on the straight-talk express: examining the McCain phenomenon American Politics Research 29 483 506 Google Scholar Popkin, Samuel L. 1991The Reasoning Voter University of Chicago Press Chicago, IL Google Scholar Rasinski, K.A. 1987 What’s fair is fair—or is it? Value differences underlying public views about social justice Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 53 201 11 CrossRef Google Scholar Rokeach, Milton. 1973The Nature of Human Values Free Press New York Google Scholar Sears, David O. 1986 College sophomores in the laboratory: influences of a narrow data base on social psychology’s view of human nature Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 51 515 530 CrossRef Google Scholar Shaw, Daron 1999 A study of presidential campaign event effects from 1952 to 1992 Journal of Politics 61 387 423 Google Scholar Sniderman, Paul M. 1993 The new look in public opinion research Ada, Finifter eds. Political Science: The State of The Discipline II American Political Science Association Washington, D.C Google Scholar Sniderman, Paul M., Brody, Richard A., Tetlock, Paul E. 1991Reasoning and choice: explorations in political psychology Cambridge University Press Cambridge, UK Google Scholar Stone, Walter, Rapoport, Ronald 1994 Candidate perception among nomination activists: A new look at the moderation hypothesis Journal of Politics 56 1034 52 Google Scholar Stone, Walter, Rapoport, Ronald, Atkeson, Lonna. 1995 A simulation model of presidential nomination choice American Journal of Political Science 39 135 61 Google Scholar Tetlock, Philip E. 1986 A value pluralism model of ideological reasoning Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 50 819 827 CrossRef Google Scholar Verba, Sidney, Orren, Gary R. 1985Equality in America: The View from the Top Harvard University Press Cambridge, MA Google Scholar Zaller, John 1992The Nature and Origin of Mass Opinion Cambridge University Press Cambridge, UK Google Scholar Zaller, John 1996 The myth of massive media impact revived: new support for a discredited idea DianaC., Mutz Paul Sniderman, M. Brody, Richard A. eds. Political Persuasion and attitude Change University of Michigan Press Ann Arbor, MI Google Scholar Zaller, John, Feldman, Stanley 1992 A simple theory of the survey response: answering questions or revealing preferences American Journal of Political Science 36 579 616 Google Scholar Copyright information
© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2005