A thorough examination of the impact of campaign politics on presidential elections in the United States is presented in this book. Using actual election results and empirical evidence, the author also incorporates data on additional factors such as media coverage, the impact of nominating conventions on public opinion, presidential debates, and other events such as staff shake-ups, endorsements and scandals. In so doing, Holbrook develops a model for testing campaigns and proves how campaigns play a key role in shaping public opinion and, ultimately, influencing outcomes.

Nominating Conventions

Nominating conventions

The national political parties have been meeting in nominating conventions during presidential election years since the early 1830s. The conventions of today, however, are very different from those of the 1800s. Ostensibly, party conventions today still gather to do the important party business of drafting a platform and nominating the presidential and vice presidential candidates. However, most of the suspense of the nomination and most of the squabbling over what will be in the party platform is over before the convention begins (Wayne 1992, 137). As a result, today's conventions are criticized as being “nonevents” precisely because so many of the important decisions have been made ahead of time. This is a significant break from conventions of the past, a break that ...

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