IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

CHILLING EFFECTS: The influence of partner incarceration on political participation

  • Naomi F. Sugie

    (Princeton University)

Registered author(s):

    The prevalence of criminal justice involvement among low-income minority men has had many negative and often unforeseen consequences for ex-felons, their families, and their neighborhoods. One consequence felon disenfranchisement laws and low levels of political engagement among ex-felons more generally has measurably altered the outcomes of state and national elections. At the same time, studies in political science more generally provide strong empirical evidence that spouses and partners influence an individual‘s political behavior. Drawing on these two areas of research, this paper considers whether political disengagement among ex-felons has had negative consequences for the voting behavior and political engagement of partners. Using data from the Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing Survey, the results find that partner incarceration is negatively associated with voting and political involvement. This association is entirely mediated by a partner‘s voting behaviors and his beliefs about his voting eligibility, regardless of state disenfranchisement laws. The political disengagement of not only ex-felons but also their partners has important implications for theories of social exclusion and the governance of marginalized groups. A large and growing population of the politically disengaged, economically marginal, and socially excluded likely has critical repercussions for US politics, democracy, and our social contract.

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    Paper provided by Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Center for Research on Child Wellbeing. in its series Working Papers with number 1339.

    in new window

    Date of creation: Jul 2011
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:pri:crcwel:wp11-19-ff
    Contact details of provider: Postal:
    Wallace Hall, Princeton NJ 08544-1013

    Phone: (609) 258-1456
    Fax: (609) 258-5974
    Web page:

    More information through EDIRC

    References listed on IDEAS
    Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

    as in new window
    1. Amanda Geller & Irwin Garfinkel & Bruce Western, 2011. "Paternal Incarceration and Support for Children in Fragile Families," Demography, Springer, vol. 48(1), pages 25-47, February.
    2. LaLonde, Robert J, 1986. "Evaluating the Econometric Evaluations of Training Programs with Experimental Data," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(4), pages 604-20, September.
    3. Bruce Sacerdote, 2000. "Peer Effects with Random Assignment: Results for Dartmouth Roommates," NBER Working Papers 7469, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:pri:crcwel:wp11-19-ff. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (David Long)

    The email address of this maintainer does not seem to be valid anymore. Please ask David Long to update the entry or send us the correct email address

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.