Expert Pitch

GDP gain to have ‘zero effect’ on voters, local pain matters most

Cornell University
28-Oct-2020 10:20 AM EDT, by Cornell University

The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis will release the third quarter gross domestic product (GDP) report on Thursday, five days before the election. 

Christopher Way, associate professor of government at Cornell University, studies the political business cycle and focuses on the effects of electoral cycles and the desire of leaders to stay in power. He says that the lived experience matters the most as voters consider the economy, and shifts to GDP this late in the year are unlikely to change minds.


Way says:

“The figure for estimated GDP growth in the third quarter will be released five days before the election. It will be dramatic. It will be record setting. It will be confusing. It will get large amounts of media coverage. And it will have absolutely zero effect on the election.

“Economic performance does affect election outcomes. But there are three important things to note about the third quarter growth figure. First, research shows that it is economic performance in the first half of an election year that matters. After mid-summer, the economy is ‘baked in’ as far as the election is concerned. Voters have formed their impression; late swings, whether upwards or downwards, have small effects. Second, with heightened partisanship, voters are adept at interpreting national aggregate figures through a partisan lens. Republicans will see positive signs in the figure, and Democrats will write it off as meaningless bounce-back following a record-setting decline in the second quarter. Few will change their views. Third, local economic pain that is personally experienced matters most. If national figures are out of sync with lived experiences, it is the personal experiences of self, family, and friends that prevail.

“For people who are still out of work or struggling with dwindling savings after the stimulus wears off, national figures will have little impact.”

Filters close

Showing results

110 of 5687
Newswise: 250494_web.jpg
Released: 3-Dec-2020 2:05 PM EST
Why does it matter if most Republican voters still think Biden lost?
University of Rochester

As President-elect Joe Biden and his administrative team officially begin the transition process, only about 20 percent of Republican voters consider him the true winner of the election.

Released: 2-Dec-2020 7:15 AM EST
Congress Must Act To Fortify Health Care System And Protect Access To Care
American College of Radiology (ACR)

The final 2021 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule fails to avert the potential impact on seniors of payment cuts to more than a million health care providers already reeling from COVID-19’s financial impact. If Congress does not act now to address these changes, the results may be devastating for patients, communities and providers.

Released: 1-Dec-2020 11:10 AM EST
‘Fairmandering’ data tool makes redistricting more representative
Cornell University

A new mathematical method developed by Cornell University researchers can inject fairness into the fraught process of political redistricting – and proves that it takes more than good intent to create a fair and representative district.

Newswise: Efficient In-person voting observed by URI VOTES research team
Released: 30-Nov-2020 4:30 PM EST
Efficient In-person voting observed by URI VOTES research team
University of Rhode Island

The 2020 election is all but complete, but a team of researchers at the University of Rhode Island is still crunching the numbers – not the number of votes, but the statistics used to determine the efficiency of in-person voting in Rhode Island, Nebraska and Los Angeles.

Newswise: Rutgers Philosophy Professor Analyzes Justice Issues in New Podcast
Released: 30-Nov-2020 9:30 AM EST
Rutgers Philosophy Professor Analyzes Justice Issues in New Podcast
Rutgers University-New Brunswick

Rutgers-New Brunswick philosophy Professor Derrick Darby is helping to bring logic and data to discussions on the struggle for justice in America and globally in A Pod Called Quest.

Showing results

110 of 5687