Racial Cues, Prejudice and Attitudes Toward Redistribution: A Comparative Experimental Approach
25 Pages Posted: 27 Aug 2013
Date Written: 2013
Past work suggests that support for welfare in the US is heavily influenced by citizens’ racial attitudes. Indeed, the idea that many Americans think of welfare recipients as poor Blacks (and especially as poor Black women) has been a common explanation for Americans’ comparatively low support for redistribution. In this study, we extend existing work on how racialized portrayals of recipients affect attitudes toward redistribution. The data for the analysis are drawn from a new and unique online survey experiment, implemented by YouGov Polimetrix and conducted with national samples in the US, UK and Canada. Through a series of survey vignettes, we experimentally manipulate the ethno-racial background of policy beneficiaries for various types of redistributive programs. By exploring whether citizens respond to other minority groups (Asians, Hispanics, South Asians and Native Americans) in a manner similar to Blacks, our results provide a cross-national extension of the American literature. We also provide an extension across policy domains by examining whether racial cues affect other welfare state policy domains. Finally, we also consider the relative impact of three different measures of overt, modern, and implicit racism.
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