Voter Information, Government Evaluations, and Party Images in the First Democratic Decade

  • Robert Mattes

Abstract

This chapter proceeds from the assumption that citizens vote for the political party they think is best fit to govern them and protect their interests. As political scientist V. O. Key succinctly put it: “Voters are not fools.”1 Or, in Christopher Achen’s formulation, voters are “neither geniuses nor saints…. Voters do not ignore information they have, do not fabricate information they do not have, and do not choose what they do not want…. They are required only to do the best with the information they have.”2

Keywords

Europe Income Volatility Mete Iraq 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Notes

  1. 1.
    V. O. Key, The Responsible Electorate: Rationality In Presidential Voting, 1936–1960 (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1967).Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Christopher Achen, “Social Psychology, Demographic Variables and the Linear Regression: Breaking the Iron Triangle In Voter Research,” Political Behavior 14, no. 3 (1992): 195–211, 198.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Russell Dalton, Citizen Politics: Public Opinion and Political Parties in Advanced Industrial Democracies (Chatham, NJ: Chatham House, 1996), 96–219.Google Scholar
  4. 6.
    Andrew Whiteford and Dirk van Seventer, Winners and Losers: South Africa’s Changing Income Distribution (Johannesburg: WEFA, 1999), 11–19.Google Scholar
  5. 6.
    Debbie Budlender, “Earnings Inequality In South Africa, 1995–1998,” in Measuring Poverty In South Africa (Pretoria: Statistics South Africa, 2000).Google Scholar
  6. 10.
    Michael Bratton, Robert Mattes, and E. Gyimah-Boadi, Public Opinion, Democracy and Market Reform in Africa (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2004).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 12.
    Samuel Popkin, The Reasoning Voter: Communications and Persuasion in Presidential Campaigns (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1994).Google Scholar
  8. 14.
    Angus Campbell, Philip Converse, Donald Stokes, and Warren Miller, The American Voter (New York: John Wiley, 1960).Google Scholar
  9. 16.
    Robert Mattes, Helen Taylor, and Cherrel Africa, “Judgement and Choice in the 1999 South African Election,” Politikon 26, no. 2 (1999): 235–247.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 16.
    Robert Mattes and Robert Mattes and Jessica Piombo, “Opposition Parties and the Voters In South Africa’s 1999 Election,” Democratization 8, no. 13 (Autumn 2001): 101–128.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 23.
    Robert Mattes and Amanda Gouws, “Race, Ethnicity and Voting Behavior,” in Elections and Conflict Resolution In Africa, ed. Timothy Sisk and Andrew Reynolds (Washington, DC: United States Institute of Peace, 1998).Google Scholar
  12. 24.
    Robert Mattes, The Election Book: Judgment and Choice in South Africa’s 1994 Election (Cape Town: Idasa, 1995).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Jessica Piombo and Lia Nijzink 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert Mattes

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations