Electoral College Results
Electoral College results show us where a president gained and lacked support in an election cycle. O’Brien looks at each presidential election from 1945 to 2017. She uses their Electoral College results to see if they affect where administrations choose to give speeches. She finds that most presidents engage in base reinforcing behavior. That is, they prefer to give speeches in places where they have the most electoral support. Many presidents pay scant attention to places not supportive of them in the last election cycle. When presidents do target areas that are not supportive, they engage in base outreach behavior. There have only been a few administrations that target swing states to outreach with George W. Bush as the most recent one.