Election Law and Voting Behavior: Does the Introduction of New Alternative Voting Methods Influence Voter Turnout?
The topic of Alternative Voting Method (AVM) law reform has been subject to frequent political discourse and analysis. Prominent AVM law reforms include unrestricted absentee ballot request laws, the introduction of early voting prior to Election Day, the abolishment of voter ID laws, and the practice of allowing for instant voter registration on Election Day. The topic of absentee (by mail) voting, for example, is often discussed in the media during pivotal elections. However, little research exists to determine the influence that such voting regimes may have on electoral results. This thesis fills a gap in the present literature by evaluating the influence of new AVM laws on voter turnout in American elections on a national scale. Voter turnout data is calculated by comparing the total number of ballots cast in every U.S. state during even-year elections from 1980 through 2020 against the state’s total Voting Eligible Population (VEP). A series of multivariate regression analyses are conducted to estimate the net percentage point change in turnout among U.S. states that have introduced new AVM laws. A variety of variables that are known in the literature to influence elections, such as demographic characteristics, economic traits, and candidate persuasion efforts, are evaluated and controlled. Results are significant at the 5% level and suggest that the introduction of new AVM law reforms has a net positive impact on voter turnout of 1.64 percentage points. Overall, the results of this thesis suggest that restrictive election laws in states that have not liberalized their approach toward AVM’s exist as an obstacle for voters to participate in U.S. elections.
Showing items related by title, author, creator and subject.
Chinese Language Print Media’s Coverage of the 2016 Presidential Election and Its Influence on Chinese Americans’ Political Attitudes and Voting Behavior Yin, Siyu (Georgetown University, 2017)This thesis applies multiple methodologies, including content analysis and framing analysis, to explore the Chinese language print media’s coverage of the 2016 Presidential Election and to investigate its influence on ...