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Electoral System 2

Political Science
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Lecture Nine: Electoral System, Continued – March 31, 2011
How do people decide
oAttack ads as beneficial for parties but not group
oPrisoner's dillema
oBiased statistically towards the Liberals
oDoesn't take into account differing views in parties
Voter Turnout
Graph: increase in proportions of Canadian population that's voting
oGraph typically shown from 1988 to give a more drastic picture of
People who vote once tend to vote in subsequent elections
oIf your first time voting is a negative experience and you don't vote,
you probably never will
Possible solutions
oRaise the voting age: 18 year olds in the past were not the same as 18
year olds now; lifecycle change
Why do People Vote?
Duty to vote
oFeel like it is an obligation
oNot a very concrete answer
How do voters behave once they've decided to vote?
oPolitical Scientists assume that people either do think like they do
about politics or that they should
oNot really true, people don't care about politics, spend their days
thinking about politics, etc.
oLittle to no effect of media
People choose their own media, so it will generally reflect their
pre-existing ideologies
Most people aren't idiots; they can recognize bias
Most people who spend time paying attention to political news
are the most likely to be sophisticated and least likely to be
influenced; the opposite is also true
Can change opinions but doesn't have a full effect
Possible Reasons for Voter Decisions
Columbia School
oKey factor of vote choice is socialization
oWho do other people like me support? Identification with social groups
oWe belong to these social groups and it is our identification with these
groups that determines our votes (Ie. You're a co-oper so you vote for
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