How Partisan Frames Affect Public Consideration of Policy Problems
16 Pages Posted: 13 Aug 2009 Last revised: 18 Sep 2009
Date Written: 2009
In the paper, we use an experimental design to assess the effect that partisan framing of a policy problem has on individuals’ preferences for a policy solution. We combine key elements from work on prospect theory, framing effects, and attitude formation to develop a theory of policy evaluation by citizens faced with alternatives involving risk. We test the predictions derived from our theory using a hypothetical, but timely, health care reform proposal. As a first cut at this question, the results of this preliminary test of our theory support two of our three hypotheses, suggesting additional implications for the application of prospect theory to the study of opinion formation surrounding domestic policy issues.
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