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Voting Outcomes in the 1984 Democratic Party Primaries and Caucuses

  • T. Wayne Parent (a1), Calvin C. Jillson (a1) and Ronald E. Weber (a1)

Abstract

Scholarly inquiry concerning influences on electoral outcomes in the presidential nomination process, though extensive, has been conducted almost exclusively with data collected at the individual level of analysis. The Michigan model of normal vote analysis suggests that long-term influences measured at the aggregate level, such as the sociodemographic, economic, and ideological characteristics of the states, are also important in determining electoral outcomes. We present an aggregate-level analysis of state characteristics that affected the Hart, Jackson, and Mondale vote proportions in the 1984 Democratic caucuses and primaries. Our primary election models explain between 65% and 83% of the variance in candidate vote shares, with sociodemographic and economic factors as the leading indicators. In the caucuses, we find that campaign spending and sociodemographic influences are dominant in models that explain between 38% and 81% of the variance. We conclude with a brief discussion of what our findings mean for future Democratic candidates.

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Voting Outcomes in the 1984 Democratic Party Primaries and Caucuses

  • T. Wayne Parent (a1), Calvin C. Jillson (a1) and Ronald E. Weber (a1)

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