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Campaigning in Past Tense: How Candidate Background Alters Issue Agendas
Unformatted Document Text:  C AMPAIGNING IN THE P AST T ENSE : H OW C ANDIDATE B ACKGROUND A LTERS I SSUE A GENDAS ∗ Brian K. Arbour University of Texas at Austin Department of Government1 University Station A1800 Austin, TX 78712 Phone: 512/231-5121 ## email not listed ## Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Midwest Political Science Association Chicago, IL April 3-6, 2008 Abstract A recent series of studies have examined the sources of campaign issue agendas. I argue that these studies have ignored an important element of a campaign’s message strategy—the reputation a candidate has earned. In this paper, I measure the issue agenda of Senate campaigns in the 2004 general election. I find that campaigns whose candidate has developed a positive reputation for working on an issue discuss that issue more often than campaigns whose candidate has not earned a reputation on that issue. This relationship is consistent across most issues, and across two different measures of a campaign’s issue agenda.  I thank Cyann Zoller for her research assistance on this paper, and John Sides for his assistance in developing the reputation variable. The data in this paper come from the Wisconsin Advertising Project, and they ask for the following disclaimer: “The data was obtained from a project of the University of Wisconsin Advertising Project includes media tracking data from TNSMI/Campaign Media Analysis Group in Washington, D.C. The University of Wisconsin Advertising Project was sponsored by a grant from The Pew Charitable Trusts. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the University of Wisconsin Advertising Project or The Pew Charitable Trusts.”

Authors: Arbour, Brian.
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background image
C
AMPAIGNING
IN
THE
P
AST
T
ENSE
:
H
OW
C
ANDIDATE
B
ACKGROUND
A
LTERS
I
SSUE
A
GENDAS
Brian K. Arbour
University of Texas at Austin
Department of Government
1 University Station A1800
Austin, TX 78712
Phone: 512/231-5121
## email not listed ##
Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Midwest Political Science Association
Chicago, IL
April 3-6, 2008
Abstract
A recent series of studies have examined the sources of campaign issue agendas. I argue that these studies
have ignored an important element of a campaign’s message strategy—the reputation a candidate has
earned. In this paper, I measure the issue agenda of Senate campaigns in the 2004 general election. I find
that campaigns whose candidate has developed a positive reputation for working on an issue discuss that
issue more often than campaigns whose candidate has not earned a reputation on that issue. This
relationship is consistent across most issues, and across two different measures of a campaign’s issue
agenda.
I thank Cyann Zoller for her research assistance on this paper, and John Sides for his assistance in developing the
reputation variable.
The data in this paper come from the Wisconsin Advertising Project, and they ask for the following disclaimer:
“The data was obtained from a project of the University of Wisconsin Advertising Project includes media tracking
data from TNSMI/Campaign Media Analysis Group in Washington, D.C. The University of Wisconsin Advertising
Project was sponsored by a grant from The Pew Charitable Trusts. The opinions expressed in this article are those of
the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the University of Wisconsin Advertising Project or The Pew
Charitable Trusts.”


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