“Sophisticated” Voting in the 1988 Presidential Primaries
Voters in multicandidate contests may confront circumstances under which it is in their interest to vote for a second- or even lower-ranked candidate. The U.S. electoral system, typically offering a choice between only two major contenders, rarely presents opportunities for this “sophisticated” voting. In presidential primaries, however, many plausible candidates may compete. We investigate the presence of sophisticated voting in the 1988 presidential primaries, using data from the National Election Study's Super Tuesday survey. We examine patterns of voting types based on ordinal measures of preferences among candidates and assessments of their chances of winning their party's nomination and estimate several models of choice, testing the multicandidate calculus of voting. Among both Republicans and Democrats, respondents' choices were consistent with the calculus of voting and thus with sophisticated voting. © 1992, American Political Science Association. All rights reserved.
Abramson, PR; Aldrich, JH; Paolino, P; Rohde, DW
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