Racial Imagery and Support for Voter ID Laws
- 830 Downloads
Previous research suggests that calls for voter ID laws include racialized appeals and that racial attitudes influence support for such laws. This study uses an experiment to test whether exposure to racial imagery also affects support for voter ID laws. The data come from a survey experiment embedded in the 2012 Cooperative Congressional Election Study (N = 1,436) randomizing the race of a voter and poll worker shown to respondents (African American voter and poll worker, white voter and poll worker, or no image). The results show that white respondents who saw an image of an African American voter and poll worker expressed greater support for voter ID laws than those in the no image condition, even after controlling for the significant effects of racial resentment and political ideology. Exposure to an image of a white voter and poll worker did not produce a similar effect. The findings provide new evidence that public opinion about voter ID laws is racialized.
KeywordsVoter ID laws Survey experiment Race Imagery
- Alvarez, R. M., Hall, T. E., Levin, I., & Stewart, C. (2011). Voter opinions about election reform: Do they support making voting more convenient? Election Law Journal: Rules, Politics and Policy, 10(2), 73–87.Google Scholar
- Ansolabehere, S. & Schaffner, B. (2013). Guide to the 2012 Cooperative Congressional Election Survey. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University [producer] http://cces.gov.harvard.edu.
- Hasen, R. L. (2012). The voting wars: From Florida 2000 to the next election meltdown. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press.Google Scholar
- Kinder, D. R., & Sanders, L. M. (1996). Divided by color: Racial politics and democratic ideals. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
- Mendelberg, T. (2001). The race card: Campaign strategy implicit messages, and the norm of equality. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
- Minnite, L. C. (2007). The politics of voter fraud. Washington, DC: Project Vote.Google Scholar
- Pew Research Center for the People and the Press. (2012). Broad support for photo ID requirements. http://www.people-press.org/2012/10/11/broad-support-for-photo-id-voting-requirements/ Accessed 29 August 2013.
- Tabachnick, B. G., & Fidell, L. S. (2006). Using multivariate statistics (5th ed. ed.). Boston: Pearson.Google Scholar