Racial resentment and support for COVID-19 travel bans in the United States

Shana Kushner Gadarian, Sara Wallace Goodman, Thomas Pepinsky

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Travel bans were a globally prevalent policy response to the COVID-19 pandemic. In the United States, travel bans against China and European countries proved a broadly popular mitigation tool among Americans. Why did Americans support COVID-19 travel bans? We fielded two novel survey experiments, surveying 3000 American citizens across five waves (between March 2020 and March 2021). In randomizing the country of origin of those potentially subject to travel ban measures, we find consistent evidence that racial attitudes drive support for travel bans. The strength of this relationship varies across political parties and across hypothetical target countries but is not explained by objective caseloads that change across countries and over the course of the pandemic.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalPolitical Science Research and Methods
StateAccepted/In press - 2023


  • American politics
  • class and ethnicity
  • public opinion
  • race

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Political Science and International Relations


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