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Panel Data Analysis of Regional Differentials in the Registered Voter Turnout Rate and the Expected Benefits of Voting for Minorities

Richard Cebula (), Christopher M. Duquette () and Robert Boylan
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Christopher M. Duquette: The MITRE Corporation

Atlantic Economic Journal, 2017, vol. 45, issue 1, 29-34

Abstract: Abstract Voter participation rates vary widely across the 50 states. We seek to identify a source of this interstate variation, focusing upon the 2000, 2004, 2008, and 2012 general elections. Of note is that the latter two general elections featured a minority (i.e., African-American) nominee for president from one of the major political parties. Within the context of the rational voter model, we hypothesize that the presence of a minority candidate atop the ticket will boost minorities’ expected net benefits from voting, with the result that minority voter participation will be higher. Based on cross-sectional fixed-effects estimations, we find that states’ voter participation rates were unaffected by the percent of the population that was either African-American or Hispanic for the 2000 and 2004 election cycles, while states’ voter participation rates were positively related to the percent of the population that was either African-American or Hispanic for the 2008 and 2012 election cycles.

Keywords: Elections; Voter participation; Disenfranchisement; Minority status; Minority candidate; D72; D78 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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