Responsible Majorities? How Group Composition Drives Partisan Expressive Voting
16 Pages Posted: 4 Mar 2021
Date Written: January 13, 2021
Individuals sometimes do not ``vote their beliefs" but rather to affirm their partisan affiliation. We design an experiment to determine the conditions under which voters engage in partisan expressive voting. Democrats and Republicans are asked to vote on the answers to factual questions about politics and are rewarded if the majority of their group answers correctly. To evaluate both compositional and audience effects, we vary the number of affected co-partisans and public dissemination of vote totals. We find that voters are more expressive as the numbers of co-partisans in either the population or the voting pool increase, despite the potential costs of such behavior for co-partisans. Our results thus indicate that large majorities will sometimes produce outcomes that all could regret.
Keywords: Experiment, Voting Behavior, Expressive Voting, Polarization, Information Aggregation
JEL Classification: D72, D83, C92
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation