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A Functional Approach to Political Advertising
Unformatted Document Text:  15 This is especially the case for voters who are not very interested in the election campaigns. A closer inspection of the specific forms of policy shows that candidates discuss past deeds (32%), future plans (35%), and general goals (32%) in a similar amount (see Table 5). Concerning the topics of political discourse in the election period, Kaid and Johnson (2001) find that issues and images have both their roles in the election; the presidential advertising in certain years tended to be more issue oriented than in other years. In this study, candidates slight more addressed policy (54%) than character (46%) in the newspaper advertisements; this difference is not statistically significant. There was no statistically significant difference in incumbency status. This finding is consistent with previous studies of political advertising which suggest that the political advertisements are devoted more to policy (60%) than to character (40%) (Benoit, 1999). Even though there is no specific criterion that determines how much character is too much, the Korean political discourse tends to focus more on character than policy as compared to U.S. This result might come from voters’ criterion upon which to choose the president. A Hankyereah Daily poll in the 2002 presidential election reported that 52.8% of respondents would vote for candidates based on their character (morality and leadership), and 38.1% would vote for candidates based on their policy. Thus, candidates might be responding to voter preferences by addressing policy and character equally. A closer look of utterances regarding character shows that candidates address personal qualities (50%) more often than leadership ability (39%), which in turn occurs more frequent than ideals (11%).

Authors: Lee, Cheolhan. and Choi, Yun Jung.
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15
This is especially the case for voters who are not very interested in the election
campaigns. A closer inspection of the specific forms of policy shows that candidates
discuss past deeds (32%), future plans (35%), and general goals (32%) in a similar
amount (see Table 5).
Concerning the topics of political discourse in the election period, Kaid and
Johnson (2001) find that issues and images have both their roles in the election; the
presidential advertising in certain years tended to be more issue oriented than in other
years. In this study, candidates slight more addressed policy (54%) than character (46%)
in the newspaper advertisements; this difference is not statistically significant.
There was no statistically significant difference in incumbency status. This
finding is consistent with previous studies of political advertising which suggest that the
political advertisements are devoted more to policy (60%) than to character (40%)
(Benoit, 1999). Even though there is no specific criterion that determines how much
character is too much, the Korean political discourse tends to focus more on character
than policy as compared to U.S. This result might come from voters’ criterion upon
which to choose the president. A Hankyereah Daily poll in the 2002 presidential election
reported that 52.8% of respondents would vote for candidates based on their character
(morality and leadership), and 38.1% would vote for candidates based on their policy.
Thus, candidates might be responding to voter preferences by addressing policy and
character equally. A closer look of utterances regarding character shows that candidates
address personal qualities (50%) more often than leadership ability (39%), which in turn
occurs more frequent than ideals (11%).


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