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Persuasive PeersSocial Communication and Voting in Latin America$
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Andy Baker, Barry Ames, and Lúcio Rennó

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780691205779

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: May 2021

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691205779.001.0001

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Voter Volatility and Stability in Presidential Campaigns

Voter Volatility and Stability in Presidential Campaigns

(p.65) 3 Voter Volatility and Stability in Presidential Campaigns
Persuasive Peers

Andy Baker

Barry Ames

Lúcio Rennó

Princeton University Press

This chapter discusses novel descriptive facts on the dynamics of vote choice during presidential election campaigns. Using all available panel data from Brazil and Mexico (plus one from Argentina), it estimates the amount of preference change that occurred in 10 election campaigns. Between any two panel waves, 17 to 45 percent of voters switched across party lines. The chapter then depicts campaign volatility at the national level, using nationwide poll results to show how the horse race unfolded in the four main election cases (Brazil 2002, Brazil 2006, Brazil 2014, and Mexico 2006). These polling trends provide a brief historical background to the election cases and allow one to refute claims that the observed switching is based strictly on individual (and potentially socially isolated) calculations to avoid a wasted vote.

Keywords:   vote choice, presidential election campaigns, Brazil, Mexico, campaign volatility, polling trends

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