MOTIVATIONS FOR NEGATIVE VOTING IN THE 1992 PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION

Lilliard E. Richardson, Michael M. Gant

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

In this paper we explore the factors leading to negative voting in presidential elections, using a national survey of the United States during the 1992 presidential campaign. Negative voting is voting against the opponent, rather than for one's preferred candidate. Based on past research, we explore three propositions: Negative voting is a function of dissatisfaction with the incumbent president's job performance; negative voting is a function of cross‐pressures among voting cues experienced by the voter; and negative voting is a function of disaffection with the political system. Substantial support is found for the first and third propositions, while only moderate support, at best, is found for the second. While we find that negative voting is influenced by individual‐level factors, it is also clear that negative voting flows from dissatisfaction with the larger political system. A multivariate analysis confirms that these systemic factors hold up in the face of controls for the other hypothesized determinants.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)267-286
Number of pages20
JournalSoutheastern Political Review
Volume22
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1994

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Political Science and International Relations

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