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Valenced news frames and public support for the EU
Unformatted Document Text:  RUNNING HEAD: Valenced news frames and public support for the EU 29 states like Belgium. The reasoning behind this is the fact that the Netherlands is by population the biggest of the smaller EU countries with six million more inhabitants than Belgium. The Dutch government wished to see this difference represented in more votes for the Netherlands than for Belgium. Eventually, the Netherlands ended up getting one more vote than Belgium, thus effectively failed to increase voting power. Furthermore, the Dutch government (together with other governments) aimed at discarding the veto right of member states for decisions in the Council, as this would make decision making in a growing Union much easier. Eventually, the veto was abandoned for a broad range of policy issues, but the British government succeeded to keep the veto for important matters like tax, health, and security. 10 In a neutral way the story explained what transformations had to be made in order to prepare the Union for enlargement. Here, possible conflicts between member states were pointed out, however it was clarified that these differences would have to be overcome anyway. Next the story provided historical information about the EU, with a clear emphasis on the importance of the Union for peace and ever growing prosperity in Europe. Accordingly, the enlargement of the EU was portrayed as being significant for establishing enduring peace and democracy in the Middle- and Eastern-European countries. 11 Knowledge was measured by the following questions: (1) What is the number of Commissioners in the EU Commission? (2) What is the name of the current president of the Commission? (3) What is the name of the Dutch commissioner? (4) What area is the Dutch commissioner responsible for? (5) Where is the European Court of Justice located? (6) Which country currently holds the presidency of the EU? (7) How many countries applied for membership in the EU? 12 Political efficacy was measured by participants’ evaluation of following statements on a 7- point-scale, ranging from ‘not agree at all’ to ‘totally agree’: (1) Sometimes politics seems so complicated that people like me cannot really follow what is going on. (2) People like me don’t have any influence on the policies of the government. (3) I think I am better informed about politics than others. (4) Political parties are only interested in people’s votes, not in their opinions. (5) Member of the Dutch parliament try to stay in contact to their voters. (6) There are so many political parties that resemble each other, it does not really matter which one you vote for. 13 Our two control measures (support for the euro and attitudes towards security issues) did not show any between-condition differences, as expected.

Authors: De Vreese, Claes. and Boomgaarden, Hajo.
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RUNNING HEAD: Valenced news frames and public support for the EU
29
states like Belgium. The reasoning behind this is the fact that the Netherlands is by population
the biggest of the smaller EU countries with six million more inhabitants than Belgium. The
Dutch government wished to see this difference represented in more votes for the
Netherlands than for Belgium. Eventually, the Netherlands ended up getting one more vote
than Belgium, thus effectively failed to increase voting power. Furthermore, the Dutch
government (together with other governments) aimed at discarding the veto right of member
states for decisions in the Council, as this would make decision making in a growing Union
much easier. Eventually, the veto was abandoned for a broad range of policy issues, but the
British government succeeded to keep the veto for important matters like tax, health, and
security.
10
In a neutral way the story explained what transformations had to be made in order to
prepare the Union for enlargement. Here, possible conflicts between member states were
pointed out, however it was clarified that these differences would have to be overcome
anyway. Next the story provided historical information about the EU, with a clear emphasis on
the importance of the Union for peace and ever growing prosperity in Europe. Accordingly,
the enlargement of the EU was portrayed as being significant for establishing enduring peace
and democracy in the Middle- and Eastern-European countries.
11
Knowledge was measured by the following questions: (1) What is the number of
Commissioners in the EU Commission? (2) What is the name of the current president of the
Commission? (3) What is the name of the Dutch commissioner? (4) What area is the Dutch
commissioner responsible for? (5) Where is the European Court of Justice located? (6) Which
country currently holds the presidency of the EU? (7) How many countries applied for
membership in the EU?
12
Political efficacy was measured by participants’ evaluation of following statements on a 7-
point-scale, ranging from ‘not agree at all’ to ‘totally agree’: (1) Sometimes politics seems so
complicated that people like me cannot really follow what is going on. (2) People like me don’t
have any influence on the policies of the government. (3) I think I am better informed about
politics than others. (4) Political parties are only interested in people’s votes, not in their
opinions. (5) Member of the Dutch parliament try to stay in contact to their voters. (6) There
are so many political parties that resemble each other, it does not really matter which one you
vote for.
13
Our two control measures (support for the euro and attitudes towards security issues) did
not show any between-condition differences, as expected.


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