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Historic FirstsHow Symbolic Empowerment Changes U.S. Politics$
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Evelyn M. Simien

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780199314171

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199314171.001.0001

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The “New Black Voter” and Obama’s Presidential Campaign

The “New Black Voter” and Obama’s Presidential Campaign

(p.97) Chapter 5 The “New Black Voter” and Obama’s Presidential Campaign
Historic Firsts

Sarah Cote Hampson

Oxford University Press

The chapter uses data from the 2008 American National Election Studies (ANES) time series to examine symbolic empowerment and its impact on political behavior. The chapter reveals that voting in the nomination campaign—specifically, voting for the winning candidate—encouraged other forms of participation on the part of the African American electorate comprised of the newly registered and those previously registered who were similarly energized by Obama’s historic candidacy. Newcomer or not, African Americans were more likely to participate in all types of political behavior—including wearing campaign buttons, posting a lawn sign or bumper sticker, engaging in political talk for or against a candidate, donating money to the Democratic Party, and attending a speech or rally—in part because of the salience of racial group identification.

Keywords:   Barack Obama, new voter, racial group identification

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