This is it!
Our pre-election survey ends TONIGHT at 11:59PM. You can still take it. To sign up, add your Email address to the box to the left. Click here to learn more.
How are you feeling about McCain and Obama today? Will your emotions affect your vote tomorrow? Or even whether you vote?
We’d like to think that voting is a rational decision-making process. For some, it is. But emotion plays a role in all sorts of decisions, and voting, of course, is far from exempt.
Both positive and negative emotions factor in. A negative emotion like anxiety about candidates can drive voters to seek and process political information. Disgust about negative campaigns turns off some voters so much that they don’t show up at the polls. I talk about these concerns in a Podcast.
Bill Clinton and George W. Bush understood the need to invoke emotions with Bush stirring the negative emotions of fear and insecurity. John Kerry and Al Gore never really understood the role of emotions—though pundits said Gore’s “lingering kiss” of his wife on television swayed female voters. (If so, it wasn’t enough to make a difference.)
How are emotions running the day before our general elections? Obama supporters are “gleeful” and McCain supporters are “glum,” according to an AP-Yahoo News-Knowledge Network poll released Saturday. (Read details about the poll here and see complete results here.) The poll suggests that many Obama supporters are feeling positive emotions and many McCain supporters are feeling negative emotions.
Obama’s supporters are more enthusiastic than McCain’s, and McCain’s are becoming even less enthusiastic. More Obama supporters are excited and interested in the political contest, compared to McCain’s supporters. More McCain backers are feeling frustrated about the campaign, angry, and bored. Fewer Obama backers are feeling frustrated and more are feeling proud and hopeful.
How will these emotions play out tomorrow? Glum McCain supporters could fail to show up. Gleeful Obama supporters could feel so overconfident that they fail to show up, too. We’ll soon know which happens.
How are your emotions running? How are you feeling about the election?
Let us know!
There’s still time to sign up for the pre-election survey! To
participate, add your Email address to the box in the upper left area of
our Web site. You can also click on the