The 2 Camps Voters Tend to Fall In

3 mins read

I’m keenly interested in learning more about what drives people to vote — namely, so we all can do more of that to drive what I hope is historic turnout in November.

As I was reading this weekend, I came across an interesting essay by Prof. Jon Krosnick, an expert on the psychology of political behaviors, about the two camps that voters fall into when they are choosing which candidate to vote for:

The first type of voter chooses the candidate who most closely aligns with their vision of what the government should do.

The second type of voter chooses the candidate they believe is the most intelligent and capable of solving problems.

As I was thinking about these two types of voters, I started to think about how I might talk to each type of voter and appeal to their style of decision-making to encourage them to vote for candidates I care about.

What about you? How would knowing this information change the way you approached someone?

Allow me to think out loud for a moment. When I first approach a voter, I might ask the question, “What issues do you care most about?” to see if they quickly answer the question with specific policy issues, and can talk about them to some degree. If I find this type of voter, I would work to quickly point out my preferred candidate’s policy stances on those issues the voter cares about and try to demonstrate that they are aligned.

If the voter doesn’t have specific policies they care about, but have more generalized concerns such as wanting a strong economy, or better jobs, etc. then that might indicate that they fall into the second camp. They want smart, strong leadership. With these voters, approval ratings (if the candidate is an incumbent) or proof of success or their ability to get things done could be important.

Again, those are my early thoughts. I’d be curious to hear from you. How might this information affect how you talk about your favorite candidates either in person, or perhaps on social media?


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