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Framing Public Discussion of Gay Civil Unions
Unformatted Document Text:  Framing Public Discussion 23 the frame manipulation). Number of statements. While the groups on average generated 15 statements, this number varied considerably across group type in response to the “civil union” frame (Ms = 21.75, 15.30 and 9.33 for conservative, heterogeneous, and liberal groups respectively). The “marriage for homosexuals” frame, meanwhile, elicited closer to an equal number of statements from the conservative (14.5), heterogeneous (14.78) and liberal groups (16) alike. Analysis of variance indicated a marginally significant effect of group type on the number of statements p <.10, and a significant interaction of group type and frame, p<.05. (F-statistics for all univariate ANOVAS are presented in Table 2.) [Table 2 here] Arguments. Across all group types, the balance of argumentation tended to oppose gay civil unions (with an average group generating 2.6 arguments supporting, and 3.9 arguments opposing legalization). There were, however, clear differences between the conservative, heterogeneous, and liberal groups, as well as some indication of contingent framing effects. Group type and frame clearly interacted in affecting the number of supporting arguments (p <.05, see Table 2 for univariate ANOVA results). A graphic representation of these interactive effects is shown in Figure 1. While the “civil union” frame had little effect on the generation of supportive arguments across group types, the “marriage for homosexuals” frame triggered pro- argumentation at a rate about four times greater in liberal groups than in conservative groups. Arguments opposed to legalizing gay partnerships, on the other hand, were strongly affected by the composition of groups, regardless of frame (p <.001).

Authors: Price, Vincent., Nir, Lilach. and Cappella, Joseph.
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Framing Public Discussion
23
the frame manipulation).
Number of statements. While the groups on average generated 15 statements, this
number varied considerably across group type in response to the “civil union” frame (Ms = 21.75,
15.30 and 9.33 for conservative, heterogeneous, and liberal groups respectively). The “marriage
for homosexuals” frame, meanwhile, elicited closer to an equal number of statements from the
conservative (14.5), heterogeneous (14.78) and liberal groups (16) alike. Analysis of variance
indicated a marginally significant effect of group type on the number of statements p <.10, and a
significant interaction of group type and frame, p<.05. (F-statistics for all univariate ANOVAS
are presented in Table 2.)
[Table 2 here]
Arguments. Across all group types, the balance of argumentation tended to oppose gay
civil unions (with an average group generating 2.6 arguments supporting, and 3.9 arguments
opposing legalization). There were, however, clear differences between the conservative,
heterogeneous, and liberal groups, as well as some indication of contingent framing effects.
Group type and frame clearly interacted in affecting the number of supporting arguments (p <.05,
see Table 2 for univariate ANOVA results). A graphic representation of these interactive effects
is shown in Figure 1. While the “civil union” frame had little effect on the generation of
supportive arguments across group types, the “marriage for homosexuals” frame triggered pro-
argumentation at a rate about four times greater in liberal groups than in conservative groups.
Arguments opposed to legalizing gay partnerships, on the other hand, were strongly affected by
the composition of groups, regardless of frame (p <.001).


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