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01-06-2011 | Original Paper | Issue 2/2011

Political Behavior 2/2011

In the Eye of the Beholder? Motivated Reasoning in Disputed Elections

Journal:
Political Behavior > Issue 2/2011
Authors:
Kyle C. Kopko, Sarah McKinnon Bryner, Jeffrey Budziak, Christopher J. Devine, Steven P. Nawara
Important notes

Electronic supplementary material

The online version of this article (doi:10.​1007/​s11109-010-9133-x) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

Abstract

This study uses an experimental design to simulate the ballot counting process during a hand-recount after a disputed election. Applying psychological theories of motivated reasoning to the political process, we find that ballot counters’ party identification conditionally influences their ballot counting decisions. Party identification’s effect on motivated reasoning is greater when ballot counters are given ambiguous, versus specific, instructions for determining voter intent. This study’s findings have major implications for ballot counting procedures throughout the United States and for the use of motivated reasoning in the political science literature.

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Supplementary Material
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 3356 kb)
11109_2010_9133_MOESM1_ESM.docx
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