This study compares empirically the relationship between presidential approval and interpersonal discussion in parallel with the role of mass media, during the 1992 U.S. primary election campaign. Data were collected in a panel survey of 670 randomly sampled registered voters in four California counties (Humboldt, Santa Clara, Orange, and San Diego). Interviews were conducted by telephone at the beginning of the primary campaign, and again just after the California primary election and before the Democratic and Republican party conventions. We used multiple regression to test the correlations of interpersonal discussion and the mass media on decline in approval of President George Bush. Interpersonal discussion was the strongest predictor (negative) of Bush's rating at time 2 of the survey, a time when Bush's rating had declined significantly. Talking about issues was more strongly correlated (again negatively) with Bush's job rating than was talking about electability or about candidates’ personal qualities.
- Interpersonal influence
- Mass media effects
- Presidential approval
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Sociology and Political Science