Is There Truth in Advertising? Campaign Ad Images as Signals about Legislative Behavior

Tracy Sulkin, Nathaniel Swigger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

We explore the extent to which the images used in House candidates' campaign advertisements serve as signals about their policy positions and issue priorities in Congress. Our analyses, based on the campaign advertisements of 130 winning candidates in the 2000 election and their subsequent interest group voting scores and introduction and cosponsorship activity in the 107th Congress, demonstrate that ad imagery-legislative behavior linkages are common. Thus, while images may seem to be the least policy-oriented component of campaign advertising, we argue that they can provide useful signals to voters about legislators' preferences and priorities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)232-244
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Politics
Volume70
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science

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