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Political Behavior

, Volume 17, Issue 4, pp 379–401 | Cite as

The rally 'round the flag effect in U.S. foreign policy crises, 1950–1985

  • John R. Oneal
  • Anna Lillian Bryan
Article

Abstract

We calculate the rally 'round the flag effect (Mueller, 1970, 1973) for all 41 U.S. foreign policy crises, 1950–1985, identified by the International Crisis Behavior Project (Wilkenfeld, Brecher, and Moser, 1988). The mean change in the president's approval rating is surprisingly small: 1.4 percent among all respondents. The greatest influences on the rallying effect of a crisis are whether or not the United States is involved in an ongoing war and, especially, theNew York Times's coverage of the president's major response to a crisis. When a major response is reported in the headlines, the rally is more than 8 percentage points greater,ceteris paribus, than when it is not reported on the front page. TheNew York Times's reporting is influenced by the nature of the president's response, the efforts of his administration to publicize his actions, the degree of Soviet involvement, the location of the crisis, and the willingness of opposition leaders to take a newsworthy position regarding the president's performance.

Keywords

Great Influence Foreign Policy York Time Major Response Front Page 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • John R. Oneal
    • 1
  • Anna Lillian Bryan
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Political ScienceUniversity of AlabamaTuscaloosa
  2. 2.Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public AffairsUniversity of Texas at AustinAustin

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