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Prominence over proximity? Terror attacks’ impact on party preferences


Hoes, Emma; Kamphorst, Jonne; Krouwel, André (2024). Prominence over proximity? Terror attacks’ impact on party preferences. European Political Science Review, 16(1):112-130.

Abstract

How does a terrorist attack affect party preferences? Based on existing theories, we would either expect incumbent parties to benefit because of a rally-effect, or populist radical right parties (PRRPs) to gain due to a radicalization of voters’ preferences. These competing theories are tested with a unique dataset of a large sample of voters’ responses on a Voting Advice Application. We do so using a novel way to leverage exogenous events using big public opinion data. We show that a terrorist attack has a positive effect for the main incumbent party, even when voters’ positions on the issues owned by the PRRPs become more radicalized. This means that during crises, voters rally around the flag and prefer prominence over policy proximity.

Abstract

How does a terrorist attack affect party preferences? Based on existing theories, we would either expect incumbent parties to benefit because of a rally-effect, or populist radical right parties (PRRPs) to gain due to a radicalization of voters’ preferences. These competing theories are tested with a unique dataset of a large sample of voters’ responses on a Voting Advice Application. We do so using a novel way to leverage exogenous events using big public opinion data. We show that a terrorist attack has a positive effect for the main incumbent party, even when voters’ positions on the issues owned by the PRRPs become more radicalized. This means that during crises, voters rally around the flag and prefer prominence over policy proximity.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Political Science
Dewey Decimal Classification:320 Political science
Scopus Subject Areas:Social Sciences & Humanities > Sociology and Political Science
Social Sciences & Humanities > Political Science and International Relations
Uncontrolled Keywords:terrorist attacks, rally-effect, populist radical right parties, immigration, VAA data
Language:English
Date:1 February 2024
Deposited On:04 Jan 2024 09:34
Last Modified:09 Feb 2024 02:06
Publisher:Cambridge University Press
ISSN:1755-7739
OA Status:Hybrid
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1017/s175577392300019x
  • Content: Published Version
  • Language: English
  • Licence: Creative Commons: Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)