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Do Politically Non-conservative Whites “Bend Over Backwards” to Show Preferences for Black Politicians?

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Abstract

The current study examined whether politically non-conservative (i.e., liberal and moderate) Whites demonstrate an explicit bias in favor of Black versus White politicians on measures of political support and whether these assessments are influenced by implicit racial bias against Blacks. To address this, 671 non-conservative Whites were presented with political speeches paired with a photograph of either a Black or a White politician implied to have given the speech and were then asked to read the speech and evaluate the politician on a number of dimensions. Results showed that participants rated Black politicians more favorably than White politicians on measures of political support, including a willingness to vote for, donate money to, and report confidence in the politician. Importantly, the favorability bias observed on these measures was not influenced by implicit racial biases. When evaluating Black politicians’ intelligence, however, an explicit favorability bias (higher overall ratings of Black compared to White politicians) was moderated by implicit racial bias. Implicit pro-White/anti-Black racial bias was associated with lower ratings of perceived intelligence of Black politicians, but not White politicians, such that the favorability bias was effectively eliminated for intelligence ratings. Our findings are consistent with previous research suggesting that although White non-conservatives may go out of their way to demonstrate outward support for Blacks, deep-rooted negative attitudes about Blacks may remain, which can potentially undermine true support for Blacks in politics.

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Correspondence to Daniel T. L. Byrd.

Appendix 1

Appendix 1

“Photo ID 1” Madam Speaker, it is amazing to me that during the 40th Anniversary of the historic passage of the Voting Rights Act, that anyone could propose mandating nationwide photo ID requirements. Given the cost, difficulty involved in obtaining photo ID for many in our society, the idea of a national voter ID requirement amounts to nothing less than a 21st Century Poll Tax. I urge my colleagues to vote against it.

“Photo ID 2” Madam Speaker, the Federal Election Integrity Act of 2007 will disenfranchise voters. Many Americans do not have photo IDs or the means to obtain them. If this bill passes a subset of our population will not be able to vote. The Constitution guarantees all American citizens the right to vote and the right for their vote to be counted. I urge my colleagues to vote against this bill.

“Minimum wage 1” Madam Speaker, I am proud to support the Fair minimum wage Act of 2007. Today we have the opportunity to raise the wages of 13 million Americans, and we should take it. Why raise the minimum wage in America? For the simple reason that men and women in the richest nation on earth should not work full time and still be relegated to living in poverty. What does it mean for the father or mother in a family of three to live on the current minimum wage? It means an income of $10,000 a year.

“Minimum wage 2” Madam Speaker, I am proud to support the Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2007. This bill provides Congress with a long-overdue opportunity to stand up for the dignity of those workers in the United States making minimum wage, or near minimum wage. The Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2007 would increase the federal minimum wage greatly over 2 years. Under this bill, sixty days after enactment, the minimum wage would rise from the current $5.15 per hour to $5.85 per hour.

“Healthcare 1” Madam Speaker, the biggest domestic crisis facing America today is health care. Every 30 s, an American files for bankruptcy in the aftermath of a serious health problem. So says a recent study from Harvard University. Today, the health care system is increasingly dysfunctional. America is fast becoming a nation of haves and have-nots, those wealthy enough to afford comprehensive health care coverage and the vast majority of American people struggling to maintain coverage. It is time to provide universal healthcare for every American, and the only delivery system that works is a single-payer healthcare system.

“Healthcare 2” Madam Speaker, it is long past the time since this Congress should be passing legislation to create a universal single-payer system of health care in the United States. This past week we saw companies cut $1 billion a year in healthcare expenses for 750,000 workers and retirees. People who have worked every day of their lives and made a contribution to this society are suddenly finding their health care benefits drastically reduced. Over 40 million Americans do not have health insurance. It is time that the government stepped in dramatically to create a universal single-payer system.

Appendix 2

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Byrd, D.T.L., Hall, D.L., Roberts, N.A. et al. Do Politically Non-conservative Whites “Bend Over Backwards” to Show Preferences for Black Politicians?. Race Soc Probl 7, 227–241 (2015). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12552-015-9153-6

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