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‘Baked In’ Voter Perceptions – “The Victory Lab: The Secret Science of Winning Campaigns”, Sasha Issenberg

December 3rd, 2012 · No Comments · Economics, Electoralism, Policy, Political Communication, Politics, Power

When a pollster asked if someone would be more or less likely to vote for a candidate in favor of shipping jobs overseas—a typical way of auditioning what was then a promising line of attack against Bush—they would often hear from voters across the board that it made them “less likely.” But when the AFL sent out a draft leaflet about Bush’s free-trade policies, it turned out to have little impact on the autoworkers who received it. The knowledge of factory job loss was “baked in” to their impressions of Bush, as Podhorzer liked to put it: the workers already knew what the union wanted them to think about Republican trade policy. They liked or disliked Bush regardless. But other groups, like construction workers and Republicans, did not know as much. A piece of mail that gave them information turned out to be persuasive in changing their attitudes toward Bush.

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