Thesis Title

Television Media Coverage and Voter Turnout: Evidence From 2018 Iowa Congressional Districts

Major Department

Economics

College

College of Liberal Arts & Sciences

Degree

BS (Bachelor of Science)

Session and Year of Graduation

Spring 2019

Honors Major Advisor

Jennifer Fuhrman

Thesis Mentor

John Solow

Abstract

I estimate the impact of relevant television media coverage of a congressional race on voter turnout. I exploit

exogenous variation in levels of coverage around the borders of Designated Marketing Areas. In particular, I compare

voter turnout in precincts that fall in the same congressional districts but different media markets, and thus are exposed

to different television media leading up to election day. I find a substantial positive impact of relevant political

coverage equal to 2.9 percentage points of additional voter turnout. I suggest possible causes for this effect, including

news coverage and advertising effects, and consider the limitations of my results. I also propose how my methodology

may be adapted to answer questions about media bias and election outcomes.

Keywords

economics, political science, elections, voter turnout, media, advertising

Total Pages

19

Copyright

Copyright © 2019 Cassidy Shubatt

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COinS
 

URL

https://ir.uiowa.edu/honors_theses/300