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Ideological Interpretations of Presidential Elections


  • Levitin, Teresa E.
  • Miller, Warren E.


This article presents a new way to define and measure the ideological sentiments of the mass electorate. Citizens are classified in terms of their evaluations and perceptions of liberals and conservatives. The measure is then used to assess the impact of ideology on the 1972 and 1976 presidential elections, to explore citizens' applications of ideological labels to parties, issues, and presidential candidates, and to describe the relationship between ideology and the potential for party realignment as well as meanings of issue voting.Although many Americans use ideological labels in ways that suggest only a partial understanding of the terms and their implications, those labels have political significance for their political attitudes and election-day decisions.

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  • Levitin, Teresa E. & Miller, Warren E., 1979. "Ideological Interpretations of Presidential Elections," American Political Science Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 73(3), pages 751-771, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:cup:apsrev:v:73:y:1979:i:03:p:751-771_16

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    Cited by:

    1. Song, Zheng, 2008. "Persistent Ideology and the Determination of Public Policies over Time," MPRA Paper 10364, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. Tanner, Thomas Cole, 1994. "The spatial theory of elections: an analysis of voters' predictive dimensions and recovery of the underlying issue space," ISU General Staff Papers 1994010108000018174, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.

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