Divide et Impera: Campaign Rallies and Voters' Preferences in the 2016 U.S. Presidential Election

48 Pages Posted: 17 Dec 2020 Last revised: 31 Oct 2023

See all articles by Henrique Barros

Henrique Barros

Brown University, Department of Economics

Date Written: October 6, 2021

Abstract

This paper explores how campaign rallies affect voters' preferences over candidates and public policies. It uses data from the 2016 U.S. Presidential Election and shows that in this context rallies held by Hillary Clinton significantly improved voters' preferences for her. Rallies held by Donald Trump generated two opposing effects: a decrease in the preference for Trump in urban counties, driven by republican and democratic voters; and a positive effect in suburban counties, driven by republican voters. Trump and Clinton rallies also shifted the policy preferences of suburban voters towards supporting more right and left wing policies, respectively. An event-study analysis shows the effects of Trump and Clinton rallies were short-lived.

Keywords: Campaign, Rallies, Voter, Preferences, Trump, Clinton, Election, President

JEL Classification: D72

Suggested Citation

Barros, Henrique, Divide et Impera: Campaign Rallies and Voters' Preferences in the 2016 U.S. Presidential Election (October 6, 2021). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3748025 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3748025

Henrique Barros (Contact Author)

Brown University, Department of Economics ( email )

Providence, RI
United States

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