- The Oxford Handbooks of American Politics
- List of Figures
- List of Tables
- About the Contributors
- The State of Survey Research as a Research Tool in American Politics
- Optimizing Survey Questionnaire Design in Political Science: Insights from Psychology
- Laboratory Experiments in American Political Behavior
- Field Experiments and the Study of Political Behavior
- Formal Modeling, Strategic Behavior, and the Study of American Elections
- Why is American Turnout so Low, and Why Should We Care?
- American Voter Turnout in Historical Perspective
- Expanding the Possibilities: Reconceptualizing Political Participation as a Toolbox
- Voter Registration: Turnout, Representation, and Reform
- Early, Absentee, and Mail‐in Voting
- Digital Democracy: How Politics Online is Changing Electoral Participation
- Voting Technology
- The Study of Electoral Behavior
- The American Voter
- Politics, Expertise, and Interdependence within Electorates
- Constructing The Vote: Media Effects in a Constructionist Model
- Campaign Effects on Vote Choice
- Forecasting Us Presidential Elections
- Economics, Elections, and Voting Behavior
- Latinos and Political Behavior: Defining Community to Examine Critical Complexities
- Organizing American Politics, Organizing Gender
- Gauging the God Gap: Religion and Voting in US Presidential Elections
- Local and National Forces in Congressional Elections
- The Study of Local Elections in American Politics
- Studying State Judicial Races in a Transformed Electoral Environment
- Primary Elections
- Direct Democracy in the United States
- Voters in Context: The Politics of Citizen Behavior
- Getting up off the Canvass: Rethinking the Study of Mobilization
- Parties, Elections, and Democratic Politics
- Organized Interests: Evolution and Influence
- Money and American Elections
- American Electoral Practices in Comparative Perspective
- On Participation: Individuals, Dynamic Categories, and the Context of Power
- Studying American Elections*
- In Search of Representation Theory
- Name Index
- Subject Index
Abstract and Keywords
This article reviews what American elections, through the National Election Study (NES) and similar survey-based analyses of the electorate, have accomplished. What were the major intellectual questions and theoretical debates that have arisen as a result of elections, and where have they taken us? It then evaluates the directions that have spun off from this common core in recent years, and asks where they are likely to lead. Scholars have used NES surveys to test propositions drawn from all of these approaches. However, none of them provides a comprehensive answer to questions of how voters decide whether to vote and for whom. The classical paradigm of the large-N random survey has already taken many new directions. The results are changing the nature of the research problem and it is therefore likely to change the nature of the theoretical structure of the field. It seems likely that new theory will emerge from advances in social psychology and neuroscience.
Paul R. Abramson is Professor of Political Science at Michigan State University.
John H. Aldrich is the Pfizer–Pratt University Professor of Political Science at Duke University.
David W. Rohde is the Ernestine Friedl Professor of Political Science at Duke University and Director of the Political Institutions and Public Choice Program.
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