Political Behavior

, Volume 9, Issue 1, pp 62–74 | Cite as

Information and party voting in “semipartisan” judicial elections

  • Lawrence Baum


Research on the relationship between the quantity of information that voters possess and their party voting behavior in partisan elections has produced mixed and confusing empirical results. In an effort to provide a broader perspective, this paper explores that relationship in nonpartisan elections contested by candidates of opposing parties. The paper analyzes survey data on two 1984 contests for seats on the Ohio Supreme Court, using the presidential race for comparison. Despite a highly partisan campaign, party defections by voters were far more common in the supreme court races than in the presidential race, reflecting the importance of party designations on the ballot as a source of information on candidates' party affiliations. At the individual level, levels of information had differing effects in the two supreme court races and for Democratic and Republican voters; this finding suggests that the impact of imformation levels on voters' choices is conditioned by the content of information in particular campaigns.


Survey Data Empirical Result Broad Perspective Vote Behavior Political Psychology 
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Copyright information

© Agathon Press, Inc 1987

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lawrence Baum
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Political ScienceOhio State UniversityColumbus

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