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Über dieses Buch

This book examines the highly emotional context of the 2016 US presidential campaign through the scope of political theater and emotional attribution. It takes inventory of the political landscape that defined the campaign and advances the argument that the campaign’s high intensity generated a more interest-attentive citizenry and became an exercise in political theater. A framework operationalizing the components of political spectacle anchors the analysis treating emotions, affect transfer and the rise of negative partisanship. The analytical scope is focused specifically on voters’ emotional responses toward Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton and empirically demonstrates the effects of discrete feelings on five emotional dimensions including pride, hope, fear, anger, and disgust on attitudes about issues ranging from the economy to immigration to the 2016 Supreme Court vacancy. Anchored in the Affective Intelligence Theory and affect transfer, the findings lend support to the principles of negative partisanship that characterized the 2016 presidential contest.

Inhaltsverzeichnis

Frontmatter

Chapter 1. Why Emotions Matter in Politics

Abstract
This chapter provides a summary overview of some traditional approaches in political science to better understand the function of emotions in voting behavior. It articulates the research question that anchors the book: Do voters’ feelings toward candidate influence their support of campaigns issues? The meaning of the discrete feelings subject to analysis here, pride, hope, anger, fear, and disgust is briefly explained. The theories that justify the academic exploration of emotions in politics in the 2016 presidential campaigns include affective intelligence theory, the transfer-of-affect thesis, and the rise of negative partisanship. A brief outline of the book details the campaign issues examined throughout the chapters.
Heather E. Yates

Chapter 2. 2016: The Year of “Democrazy” and the Politics of Spectacle

Abstract
This chapter maps the theoretical underpinnings of the conditions that shaped the political landscape of the 2016 presidential campaign. Among those conditions was the politics of the “no-third-term tendency” that created a difficult path to the White House for Democrats. There are several theoretical considerations addressed in this chapter: first, the politics of backlash and resentment, the politics of intergroup conflict, and the role of gender in politics. This chapter operationalizes the tenets political theme to situate the analysis of the book: the politics of spectacle and the 2016 campaign. Simply defined, spectacle creates something to look at. The thesis is advanced that the components of spectacle were largely anchored in campaign rhetoric and unconventional tactics. At times, the spectacle seemed to intentionally detract from substantive issues.
Heather E. Yates

Chapter 3. The Politics of “America First”: Problematizing the Economy and Trade on the Campaign Trail

Abstract
The economy is frequently a reliable predictor of electoral outcomes. In 2016, there were some distinctive pivots from conventional discussion of economic indicators. The Trump campaign introduced policy proposals that pointed to policies and practices that engendered protectionist behavior on part of the USA that marked a notable departure from conventional Republican positions and, more widely, US policy on trade. This chapter examines the rhetoric that revolved around the topic of the US economy and trade. The analysis examines voters’ candidate affect response toward Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton and how it affected appraisals of the US economy and policy directed at managing the role of the USA in free-trade agreements.
Heather E. Yates

Chapter 4. The Health of a Nation: The Politics and Legacy of Health Care Reform

Abstract
Leading up to the 2016 presidential election, the Republican controlled Congress had voted to amend or repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA or “Obamacare”) more than 50 times. This was an issue on the campaign trail and both campaigns offered distinctive positions on the topic of health care in America. The ACA had become a highly politicized and polarizing issue by the time of the 2016 general election cycle. This chapter examines the campaign rhetoric surrounding the ACA and associated proposals to repeal and reform it. Analysis of voters’ candidate affect response toward Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton examines how it influenced appraisals of health care, its reform, and possible repeal.
Heather E. Yates

Chapter 5. Neo-Nativism and Global Frienemies: Feelings Toward Immigration and National Security Issues

Abstract
This chapter examines the campaign rhetoric and tactics employed by both campaigns on the topic of immigration policy. Concerns and fears regarding national security got loaded onto the topic of immigration. This issue was Donald Trump’s featured platform on the campaign trail. This chapter examines the policy issues of immigration and national security as they got entrenched in the politics of fear and xenophobia, but operationalized in very different ways. The survey questions pertaining to military and security pivoted away from Iraq and Afghanistan to focus on Southeast Asia and China. The analysis here looks at voters’ candidate affect response toward both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton and how it affected appraisals of immigration and national security in 2016.
Heather E. Yates

Chapter 6. God, Guns, and Bathrooms: Concepts of Morality on the Campaign Trail

Abstract
Historically, presidential campaigns have typically featured some aspect of a moral agenda. Much of that changed on the campaign trail in 2016. Many of the traditional topics used to measure public attitudes on select issues pertaining to morality and ethics were not present on the ANES 2016. Yet, the 2016 presidential campaign was noticeably devoid of a conventional “social problems” platform. This chapter examines the pivot away from the conventional campaign tactics on social issues and studies how a Supreme Court vacancy became a proxy issue that Republicans employed to court evangelicals. The vacancy effectively became a dog whistle for evangelicals and right-wing ideological conservatives to remain loyal to the Republican Party in the 2016 election.
Heather E. Yates

Chapter 7. Conclusion: The Campaign of Personalized Conflict

Abstract
This chapter offers concluding remarks about emotive context of the presidential campaign and which emotional dimensions had significant influence on voters’ decisions—leading voters to interpret personal feelings as salient political information on specific policy issues. It also reviews thematic and distinctive patterns from the findings that point to evidence that lends support to the negative partisanship framework, and the 2016 presidential campaign along with some possible implications intimated by this evidence.
Heather E. Yates

Backmatter

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