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Economics, Politics and the 2004 Election: Electoral Victory and Statistical Defeat

  • Economics
  • Political Science


The 2004 election has been interpreted as a resounding victory for conservative values. Was it in fact a mandate? The present analysis examines recent electoral outcomes and the 2004 election with particular reference to economic and political fundamentals. Looking at both aggregate results and exit polls since 1972, it examines three models of performance relative to economic and political fundamentals. Additionally, it identifies the trends for different socio-economic groups. It concludes that the Republican candidate in 2004 did significantly worse than would be predicted based on economic and political fundamentals.

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