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Do Abortion Attitudes Lead to Party Switching?

Mitchell Killian and Clyde Wilcox
Political Research Quarterly
Vol. 61, No. 4 (Dec., 2008), pp. 561-573
Published by: Sage Publications, Inc. on behalf of the University of Utah
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/20299760
Page Count: 13
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Do Abortion Attitudes Lead to Party Switching?
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Abstract

The notion that issues and ideology can move partisanship remains controversial. The authors explore the stronger claim that issues can lead people to switch political parties and whether the effect of abortion attitudes is asymmetrical (i.e., abortion attitudes may influence party switching in only one direction). They show that in several short-term National Election Studies panels, pro-life Democrats were significantly more likely than other Democrats to become Republicans, but pro-choice Republicans were not likely to become Democrats. However, using panel data over a long time frame, 1982 to 1997, the authors also demonstrate that the cumulative effect of abortion attitudes led pro-life Democrats and pro-choice Republicans to switch parties.

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