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Agenda setting and political partisanship in an election campaign: Reinforcing and undermining partisan voting intentions
Unformatted Document Text:  13 As can be seen in Table 2, respondents perceived that there was more public support for the Government than for the Opposition on these issues, Fs 2.91, p .10. However, this pattern was most pronounced for Liberal partisans, η 2 = .36 and .24, less pronounced for neutral voters, η 2 = .13 and .09, and least pronounced for Labor partisans, η 2 = .07 and .02. Further, although Labor partisans tended to perceive more public support for the Opposition on these issues than other voters, this tendency was only significant on the issue of immigration and Labor partisans were unwilling to suggest that there was more public support for the Opposition than for the Government as might be expected if Labor partisans had shown strong ingroup bias. ____________________ Table 2 here ____________________ These perceptions of public opinion were mirrored in respondents’ predictions about the likely election outcome. Overall, voters tended to predict a Liberal win, M = 4.47 on a 7-point scale, although results of a one-way ANOVA indicated that there were significant differences in predictions of the election outcome according to partisanship, F(2,180) = 8.54, p = .000, η 2 = .09. Liberal partisans (Ms = 4.93) were more likely to predict a Liberal win than neutral voters (Ms = 4.30) or Labor supporters (Ms = 4.02) and only the mean response for Liberal partisans was significantly greater than the scale mid-point of “unsure”, t(75) = 7.10, p = .000. Personal Opinion, Voting Intention and Confidence in the Political Leaders In order to provide a corresponding picture at the of personal opinion we examined personal support for the Government and Opposition responses to the on-agenda issues and personal voting intentions as well as personal confidence in the leaders of the two political parties. Personal support for Government and Opposition responses to the issues of immigration and defense were examined in 2 (party) x 3 (partisanship) ANOVAs. Results on the issue of immigration indicated significant main effects for target, F(1,181) = 24.89, p = .000, η 2 = .12, and partisanship, F(2,181) = 18.14, p = .000, η 2 = .17, and a significant two-way interaction between the factors, F(2,181) = 45.43, p = .000, η 2 = .33. A very similar pattern emerged on the issue of defense. Results indicated significant main effects for target, F(1,181) = 12.40, p = .001, η 2 = .06, and partisanship, F(2,181) = 23.71, p = .000, η 2 = .21, and a significant two-way interaction between the factors, F(2,181) = 35.45, p = .000, η 2 = .28.

Authors: Duck, Julie., Morton, Thomas. and Fortey, Kate.
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13
As can be seen in Table 2, respondents perceived that there was more public support for
the Government than for the Opposition on these issues, Fs
2.91, p .10. However, this
pattern was most pronounced for Liberal partisans,
η
2
= .36 and .24, less pronounced for neutral
voters,
η
2
= .13 and .09, and least pronounced for Labor partisans,
η
2
= .07 and .02. Further,
although Labor partisans tended to perceive more public support for the Opposition on these
issues than other voters, this tendency was only significant on the issue of immigration and
Labor partisans were unwilling to suggest that there was more public support for the Opposition
than for the Government as might be expected if Labor partisans had shown strong ingroup bias.
____________________
Table 2 here
____________________
These perceptions of public opinion were mirrored in respondents’ predictions about the
likely election outcome. Overall, voters tended to predict a Liberal win, M = 4.47 on a 7-point
scale, although results of a one-way ANOVA indicated that there were significant differences in
predictions of the election outcome according to partisanship, F(2,180) = 8.54, p = .000,
η
2
=
.09. Liberal partisans (Ms = 4.93) were more likely to predict a Liberal win than neutral voters
(Ms = 4.30) or Labor supporters (Ms = 4.02) and only the mean response for Liberal partisans
was significantly greater than the scale mid-point of “unsure”, t(75) = 7.10, p = .000.
Personal Opinion, Voting Intention and Confidence in the Political Leaders
In order to provide a corresponding picture at the of personal opinion we examined
personal support for the Government and Opposition responses to the on-agenda issues and
personal voting intentions as well as personal confidence in the leaders of the two political
parties.
Personal support for Government and Opposition responses to the issues of immigration
and defense were examined in 2 (party) x 3 (partisanship) ANOVAs. Results on the issue of
immigration indicated significant main effects for target, F(1,181) = 24.89, p = .000,
η
2
= .12,
and partisanship, F(2,181) = 18.14, p = .000,
η
2
= .17, and a significant two-way interaction
between the factors, F(2,181) = 45.43, p = .000,
η
2
= .33. A very similar pattern emerged on the
issue of defense. Results indicated significant main effects for target, F(1,181) = 12.40, p = .001,
η
2
= .06, and partisanship, F(2,181) = 23.71, p = .000,
η
2
= .21, and a significant two-way
interaction between the factors, F(2,181) = 35.45, p = .000,
η
2
= .28.


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