Partisan Priorities: How Issue Ownership Drives and Distorts American Politics (Paperback)
  • Partisan Priorities: How Issue Ownership Drives and Distorts American Politics (Paperback)
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Partisan Priorities: How Issue Ownership Drives and Distorts American Politics (Paperback)

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£21.99
Paperback 264 Pages / Published: 22/07/2013
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Americans consistently name Republicans as the party better at handling issues like national security and crime, while they trust Democrats on issues like education and the environment - a phenomenon called 'issue ownership'. Partisan Priorities investigates the origins of issue ownership, showing that in fact the parties deliver neither superior performance nor popular policies on the issues they 'own'. Rather, Patrick J. Egan finds that Republicans and Democrats simply prioritize their owned issues with lawmaking and government spending when they are in power. Since the parties tend to be particularly ideologically rigid on the issues they own, politicians actually tend to ignore citizens' preferences when crafting policy on these issues. Thus, issue ownership distorts the relationship between citizens' preferences and public policies.

Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 9781107617278
Number of pages: 264
Weight: 410 g
Dimensions: 228 x 152 x 15 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
"This book takes us far toward understanding the current dysfunction in Washington. Using powerful tools and scrupulously even-handed analysis, Egan shows that each party's priorities are driven by its office holders, activists, and interest groups. The policy preferences of ordinary Americans have little impact. Real reform will not happen until the hard lessons of this book have been absorbed." - Christopher H. Achen, Princeton University
"Partisan Priorities is a most important and welcome book that links 'issue ownership' to larger questions of declining short-term democratic responsiveness and increasing partisan polarization in the United States. It is theoretically and empirically impressive, marshalling a wide array of public opinion and other data and persuasively emphasizing the importance of examining issues and behavior in the aggregate to understand the significance of issue ownership in the American political system." - Robert Y. Shapiro, Columbia University
"Partisan Priorities is a provocative book that challenges our understanding of how political parties and issues matter in American politics. At its heart is a simple idea - that party ownership of issues matters in American politics and that this ownership is driven not by the policy positions parties take or their performance on the issues while in government, but by the priorities parties place on them. The idea turns out to be quite powerful. Egan carefully crafts a measure of ownership based on public assessments of which party would do a better job on various issues, and demonstrates that party priorities drive public assessments. He then shows that this issue ownership impacts politics and political representation in important ways. It is an ambitious piece of work to be sure and deserves a wide audience among scholars of American politics and beyond." - Christopher Wlezien, University of Texas at Austin

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