No factor appears more powerful in explaining how individuals evaluate political information and form political preferences than partisanship. Yet, virtually all work on the effects of partisanship on preference formation neglects the crucial role of social settings. In this study, I examine how social settings can fundamentally change the influence of partisanship on preferences. I demonstrate that, in fact, social settings exert an independent influence over preference formation-one that is even larger than the influence of partisan ambivalence. The central implication of these findings is that, going forward, we cannot fully explore how citizens apply their partisanship in evaluating political information without also accounting for the social settings in which individuals find themselves.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Sociology and Political Science
- Political Science and International Relations