that the Perot voter, like the Reagan Democrat of the 1980s, win provide an important battleground over the next few elections
Comparisons with the national electorate are drawn from the 1992 American
National Election Study (ANES); these data are based on surveys conducted by the Center
for Political Studies at the University of Michigan and made available by the InterUniversity Consortium for Political and Social Research. Comparisons with party activists
are based on surveys with samples of 1992 Iowa and Virginia Democratic caucus participants and 1992 Iowa Republican caucus participants, all of which were carried out after the
November election. We do not argue that our caucus states somehow represent the entire
nation, but we have found that cross-state variations within party samples are fairly small,
especially on most of the indicators of interest in this chapter (see Abramowitz,
Rapoport 1983; Stone,
The racial makeup of the Perot group reflected a similar bias vis-à-vis the national
electorate, as did the Democratic and Republican caucus participant samples, i.e., it was
heavily white. We should point out that the combined mean incomes of Iowa and Virginia
are very dose to the national average, as is the overall nonwhite proportion in these two
states (23 percent in Virginia and 3 percent in Iowa, for an average of 13 percent)
This figure is based on data from the 1992 American National Election Study
This latter coalition would emerge again in 1993 as Perot lobbied against the North
American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)
The measure of party identification used in our mail questionnaires was based on the
ANES version (see Appendix) but with slight variations in wording to accommodate the
We should note that it is Republicans who claim the larger share of identifiers, if only
marginally (42 percent vs. 37 percent). This makes the Perot sample not only much more
independent than the national electorate but substantially more Republican as well
The specific question here asked for an "overall evaluation" of the Republican and
Ratings by the general public in Table 8.7 are based on the ANES "feeling thermometer" questions (see Appendix), with scores above 50 degrees being "favorable" and scores
below 50 degrees being "unfavorable."
This is based on one of the standard ANES "political trust" measures (see Chapter 3),
the principal difference being that ANES does not offer "almost never" as an explicit response option
Using various measures of alienation (most prominently trust in government, evaluation of the Supreme Court and Congress, and evaluation of the more highly rated major
party), we created a scale of alienation. The scale was then trichotomized so that one-quarter was placed into the most-alienated category, one-quarter into the least-alienated category, and the remaining half into an intermediate grouping
For example, 58.9 percent of the sample agreed that they could "do a better job in
public office than most people."
Data on the congressional votes of Perot supporters are from the New York Times, November 5, 1992 (p. B9) and November 10, 1994 (p. 134).
Questia, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning. www.questia.com
Book title: Broken Contract?Changing Relationships between Americans and Their Government.
Contributors: Stephen C. Craig - Editor.
Publisher: Westview Press.
Place of publication: Boulder, CO.
Publication year: 1996.
Page number: 164.
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