American roulette: The effect of reminders of death on support for George W. Bush in the 2004 presidential election

Florette Cohen, Daniel M. Ogilvie, Sheldon Solomon, Jeff L Greenberg, Tom Pyszczynski

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86 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

An experiment was conducted to assess the effect of a subtle reminder of death on voting intentions for the 2004 U.S. presidential election. On the basis of terror management theory and previous research, we hypothesized that a mortality salience induction would increase support for President George W. Bush and decrease support for Senator John Kerry. In late September 2004, following a mortality salience or control induction, registered voters were asked which candidate they intended to vote for. In accord with predictions, Senator John Kerry received substantially more votes than George Bush in the control condition, but Bush was favored over Kerry following a reminder of death, suggesting that President Bush's re-election may have been facilitated by nonconscious concerns about mortality in the aftermath of September 11, 2002.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)177-187
Number of pages11
JournalAnalyses of Social Issues and Public Policy
Volume5
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2005

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presidential election
election
mortality
death
induction
voter
president
voting
terrorism
candidacy
experiment
prediction
management
effect

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences(all)

Cite this

American roulette : The effect of reminders of death on support for George W. Bush in the 2004 presidential election. / Cohen, Florette; Ogilvie, Daniel M.; Solomon, Sheldon; Greenberg, Jeff L; Pyszczynski, Tom.

In: Analyses of Social Issues and Public Policy, Vol. 5, No. 1, 12.2005, p. 177-187.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Cohen, Florette ; Ogilvie, Daniel M. ; Solomon, Sheldon ; Greenberg, Jeff L ; Pyszczynski, Tom. / American roulette : The effect of reminders of death on support for George W. Bush in the 2004 presidential election. In: Analyses of Social Issues and Public Policy. 2005 ; Vol. 5, No. 1. pp. 177-187.
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