The Influence of Group and Outcome Cues on Perceptions of Governmental Spending

36 Pages Posted: 31 Aug 2009 Last revised: 13 Feb 2011

See all articles by Carl L. Palmer

Carl L. Palmer

Illinois State University - Department of Politics and Government

Date Written: February 10, 2011

Abstract

Previous research in issue framing has shown the importance of social groups in shaping opinion. When issues become tied to social groups through rhetoric, group sentiment becomes an important ingredient for opinion on associated issues. This project seeks to build upon such simple considerations of framing to examine the effect of group-implicating frame in conjunction with an additional component, the outcome. Results from an experiment embedded in a national survey suggest that, ignoring individual characteristics, outcomes are more important than beneficiaries when evaluating policy. When considering differences in individual sophistication however, we see that political knowledge serves as an important moderating factor for such frames, as well as individual dispositions. More sophisticated respondents, while still taking account of outcomes were also significantly more likely to differentiate between targeted groups. These findings have important implications for an understanding of how groups come to influence opinion through rhetoric, while raising a normative concern about the propensity for bias in issue opinion.

Keywords: Framing, Public Opinion, Earned Income Tax Credit

Suggested Citation

Palmer, Carl L., The Influence of Group and Outcome Cues on Perceptions of Governmental Spending (February 10, 2011). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1464454 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1464454

Carl L. Palmer (Contact Author)

Illinois State University - Department of Politics and Government ( email )

433 Schroeder Hall
Normal, IL 61790
United States

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
79
Abstract Views
667
rank
376,652
PlumX Metrics