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Partisan Realignments in the US (Schofield et al.). Two questions:. Is politics one-dimensional ? (i.e., is a Liberal-Conservative dimension sufficient?) Do you think that there is a good account of how electoral realignments in American politics actually occur?.

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two questions
Two questions:
  • Is politics one-dimensional? (i.e., is a Liberal-Conservative dimension sufficient?)
  • Do you think that there is a good account of how electoral realignments in American politics actually occur?
partisan realignments in the us
Partisan Realignments in the US
  • Party realignments have long fascinated scholars of American politics
  • However, no simple model has captured how these phenomena actually occur
  • Until now…
political map of the us in 2004 george bush republican vs john kerry democrat
Political Map of the US in 2004George Bush (Republican)vs.John Kerry (Democrat)
1896 vs 2004
1896 vs. 2004
  • Red states turn blue, and vice versa
  • How did this happen?
  • Why did this happen?
  • Schofield et al.: politics is two-dimensional!
american politics is two dimensional
American politics is two-dimensional
  • Economic dimension
  • Social dimension
1896 vs 200415
1896 vs. 2004
  • Why was the 2004 election the mirror image of the 1896 election?
  • Significant constituencies must have deserted each party, switching their allegiances
most likely candidates
Most likely candidates?
  • Populists (D → R)
  • Cosmopolitans (R → D)
  • Look at survey data see if it supports this
evidence
Evidence?
  • Populists: working-class, socially conservative voters
  • Cosmopolitans: middle-class, socially liberal voters
operationalization
“Operationalization”
  • Populists: individuals in the 16th percentile or below on annual income who oppose abortion regardless of circumstances
  • Cosmopolitans: individuals in the 68th percentile or above on annual income who support abortion
conclusion
Conclusion?
  • Data shows that in recent years populists moved away from the Democratic Party toward the Republican Party
  • Also shows a movement of cosmopolitans in the opposite direction (R → D)
additional resources
Additional resources:
  • Note: if you are interested in finding more about this topic, see Norman Schofield’s papers athttp://schofield.wustl.edu/schofieldpapers.html
  • Especially  ACTIVISTS AND PARTISAN REALIGNMENT IN THE UNITED STATESAmerican Political Science Review, 97(2) May 2003, and CRITICAL ELECTIONS AND POLITICAL REALIGNMENTS IN THE USA: 1860-2000Political Studies, Vol 51, 217-240 2003
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