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Week 7 - Campaign Messaging & Issue Ownership

Section Objectives

  • Explain and utilize a causal inference framework to construct, discuss, and critically analyze research arguments.
  • Define Free Media and Paid Media, using research literature and conceptual examples from modern elections.
  • Discuss the various campaign strategies and considerations used by candidates, as described in Ch. 6 of Iyengar & McGrady (2011).
  • Analyze the core findings of Petrocik (1996), focusing on the Issue Ownership hypothesis.
  • Analyze the core findings of Iyengar and Ansolabehere (1994), focusing on the "Riding-the-Wave" hypothesis.
  • Explore and define Wedge Appeals, using research literature and conceptual examples from modern elections.

Key Terms and Concepts

  • Campaign Effects
  • Campaign Strategies
  • Credibility-Control Tradeoff
  • Free Media
  • Issue Ownership
  • Media Effects
  • Media Mixture
  • Paid Media
  • Riding the Wave
  • Wedge Appeals

Section Slides

**See attached .pdf file.

Summaries of Selected Weekly Readings

Author Puzzle Hypothesis Dependent Variable Independent Variable(s)
Iyengar & McGrady (2011)

 How do candidate determine their campaign strategies through the media?


 Media-based campaigns take place in two arenas: Free Media  (news coverage) and Paid Media  (candidate advertisements)

Use of Free of Paid Media Size of Election, Scope of Election, Credibility-Control Tradeoff
Iyengar & McGrady (2011)

Do candidates always campaign based on policy issues and positions?

Wedge Appeals  induce social cleavages that pit groups against each other, to appeal to voters’ sense of group identity. When candidates turn to wedge appeals, they are losing the debate on policy issues.

Use of Wedge Appeals Success in Debate, Existing Social Cleavages
Petrocik (1996)

 How do campaigns set, or affect, the criteria which voters rely upon to choose candidates?

 Candidates frame vote choice around who is better able to handle a given issue; this handling represents "owning" an issue.

Voting Intentions, Issue Concerns of Electorate Issue Ownership
Iyengar and Ansolabehere (1994)

 What is the relative effectiveness of campaign advertising?

 Campaign effects exist when a candidate issue owns and “rides the wave”.

Voting Intentions

Issue Ownership, Media Coverage, Interactions