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Copyright © 2015 Active Education
peped.org/politicalinvestigations
Voting behaviour
Why do people vote the way they do an...
Copyright © 2015 Active Education
peped.org/politicalinvestigations
Lesson Objectives
• To understand the influences on vo...
Copyright © 2015 Active Education
peped.org/politicalinvestigations
Voting behaviour
Why do people vote the way they do an...
Copyright © 2015 Active Education
peped.org/politicalinvestigations
Models of Voting Behaviour
• Voting Context
(Nature of...
Copyright © 2015 Active Education
peped.org/politicalinvestigations
How far do social structures still
influence voting be...
Copyright © 2015 Active Education
peped.org/politicalinvestigations
How influential is the media?
• Newspapers are an impo...
Copyright © 2015 Active Education
peped.org/politicalinvestigations
Media theory
• Manipulative theory – the media is cont...
Copyright © 2015 Active Education
peped.org/politicalinvestigations
Newspapers
• The Sun newspaper supported the Tories in...
Copyright © 2015 Active Education
peped.org/politicalinvestigations
Newspapers
• However, you must also remember that:
• 1...
Copyright © 2015 Active Education
peped.org/politicalinvestigations
Television
• Television, unlike newspapers, must be ba...
Copyright © 2015 Active Education
peped.org/politicalinvestigations
Television
• In the run up to the 2010 general electio...
Copyright © 2015 Active Education
peped.org/politicalinvestigations
Internet
• All parties made use of the internet throug...
Copyright © 2015 Active Education
peped.org/politicalinvestigations
Opinion Polls
• Using the handout “Opinion Polls” answ...
Copyright © 2015 Active Education
peped.org/politicalinvestigations
Recent General Elections
How have people voted in rece...
Copyright © 2015 Active Education
peped.org/politicalinvestigations
Recent general elections
• You will be given a breakdo...
Copyright © 2015 Active Education
peped.org/politicalinvestigations
Context
2001 General Election 2005 General Election
• ...
Copyright © 2015 Active Education
peped.org/politicalinvestigations
Issues and events
2001 General Election 2005 General E...
Copyright © 2015 Active Education
peped.org/politicalinvestigations
Voting behaviour
2001 General Election 2005 General El...
Copyright © 2015 Active Education
peped.org/politicalinvestigations
Results
2001 General Election 2005 General Election
• ...
Copyright © 2015 Active Education
peped.org/politicalinvestigations
General Election 2010 and 2015
2010 General Election 2...
Copyright © 2015 Active Education
peped.org/politicalinvestigations
Voting behaviour
Which voting behaviour model is the m...
Copyright © 2015 Active Education
peped.org/politicalinvestigations
Applying what you have learned
• Which voting model(s)...
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Voting Behaviour

A PowerPoint examining why people vote the way they do and what there influences are

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Voting Behaviour

  1. 1. Copyright © 2015 Active Education peped.org/politicalinvestigations Voting behaviour Why do people vote the way they do and what influences them?
  2. 2. Copyright © 2015 Active Education peped.org/politicalinvestigations Lesson Objectives • To understand the influences on voting behaviour • To analyse the voting behaviour in past elections • To evaluate which voting model is the most accurate in explaining voting behaviour
  3. 3. Copyright © 2015 Active Education peped.org/politicalinvestigations Voting behaviour Why do people vote the way they do and what influences them?
  4. 4. Copyright © 2015 Active Education peped.org/politicalinvestigations Models of Voting Behaviour • Voting Context (Nature of election, electoral system can affect voting, voters may choose to protest, abstain or vote tactically) • Dominant Ideology (Conspiracy theory, voters choice is manipulated by those in power using media) • Social Structures (Mainly class, but also age, gender. Race, religion etc.) • Rational Choice (voters weigh up parties’ manifestos, track-record and recent events) • Party ID (voters aligned to a certain party)
  5. 5. Copyright © 2015 Active Education peped.org/politicalinvestigations How far do social structures still influence voting behaviour? • How are social class and voting behaviour linked? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FdEdS_w24eo • How do gender, ethnicity and age impact voting behaviour? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1abMtx3o9r4
  6. 6. Copyright © 2015 Active Education peped.org/politicalinvestigations How influential is the media? • Newspapers are an important source of political information, but they are also partisan. Therefore readers may be influenced by the views of their daily newspaper, but only 10% of people believe newspapers influence their vote. • TV also has the potential to be a significant influence on the electorate. The average UK citizens watches 25.2 hours of TV a week and 51% of adults consider TV to be their main source of political information. However, over half of voters claim to have already made up their minds about how they will vote before the campaign. Nearly half of all voters say they pay little attention to political news and coverage. TV may only serve to confirm the views of voting viewers. However, it only takes a small number of voters changing their mind to swing an election. • Party Election Broadcasts were watched by 58% of voters in 2005, and more than 50% of voters felt they had influenced them. PEBS are popular, but may only confirm the existing views of the electorate
  7. 7. Copyright © 2015 Active Education peped.org/politicalinvestigations Media theory • Manipulative theory – the media is controlled by an elite group of people who use this control to maintain the status quo, and therefore their own position – remember Billy Bragg’s lyrics? • Hegemonic theory – people who write and edit newspapers and those involved in broadcast journalism have a particular view due to their education, age, social class. They write, therefore, from that specific outlook (even if this is unconscious bias!) • Pluralist theory – people can choose what they read, watch and listen to and therefore choose media that reflects and reinforces their own ideas and the views they already have.
  8. 8. Copyright © 2015 Active Education peped.org/politicalinvestigations Newspapers • The Sun newspaper supported the Tories in 1992 and they won despite Labour being favourites leading to the headline “It’s The Sun Wot Won It”. They moved back to Labour in 1997 and won, maintaining power for 13 years. They then backed the Tory’s in 2010 with the headline “Labour’s lost it”. Is The Sun newspaper really that influential or do they simply know when to switch allegiance? Do they influence voters, or are they influenced by the views of their readership and adapt accordingly? • There are two views about the importance of newspapers; the agenda setting view and the reinforcement view: • The Agenda Setting Theory suggests that the media can force certain issues into the political agenda by having prominent stories or campaigns about them • The Reinforcement Theory says that people are not really influenced by the paper they read but in fact they choose a paper which expresses views the reader already agrees with
  9. 9. Copyright © 2015 Active Education peped.org/politicalinvestigations Newspapers • However, you must also remember that: • 1 in 3 voters does not read a national newspaper at all • Newspaper readers are not loyal – they will switch papers according to various factors (headline, price, sport coverage, gossip?) • Fewer people are buying newspapers – are newspapers more likely to follow the opinion of customers? • We now have multi channel TV and 24 hour news channels, newspapers are in long term decline and not the main source of political news • CREST believes “newspapers have relatively little influence on the outcome of elections”
  10. 10. Copyright © 2015 Active Education peped.org/politicalinvestigations Television • Television, unlike newspapers, must be balanced and impartial giving equal access and coverage to political parties. • Approximately 67% of people surveyed felt that TV broadcasts had little impact on their decision and 29% said it was not important at all. • This is despite it being the most expensive form of advertising used by political parties. • In 20 years will we still be watching Party Political Broadcasts? • This 2015 Green Party PB got a lot of attention: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PPgS7p40ERg
  11. 11. Copyright © 2015 Active Education peped.org/politicalinvestigations Television • In the run up to the 2010 general election there was a series of three debates between the leaders of the three main parties; Gordon Brown (Lab), David Cameron (Con) and Nick Clegg (Lib Dem). • They were the first such debates to be broadcast live in the run up to a UK election. The first half of each debate focused on a particular theme (domestic, international, economic affairs) before general issues were discussed. The questions were not disclosed to the leaders before the debate. • Three in five said the debates would be important in helping them decide who to vote for. After the debate 46% said the debate had no impact on how they intended to vote with only 23% saying the debate changed their mind about who to vote for (25% said the debate reinforced their idea of who to vote for, and 1% said it had put them off voting for any party!). • Leaders Debate 2015 (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Sv2AOQBd_s)
  12. 12. Copyright © 2015 Active Education peped.org/politicalinvestigations Internet • All parties made use of the internet through the use of their official website, email updates from key party members, online fundraising and key figures on Facebook and Twitter. • There was also the use of ‘stealth sites’ for example the Lib Dems set up a false party known as ‘Labservative’) and the Conservatives used strategies to divert web traffic, for example they had a video linked to s search for Gordon Brown on YouTube.
  13. 13. Copyright © 2015 Active Education peped.org/politicalinvestigations Opinion Polls • Using the handout “Opinion Polls” answer the following questions: • What 2 effects on the electorate can opinion polls have? • How accurate have opinion polls been since 1997? • What are the main benefits of opinion polls? • What are the main criticisms of opinion polls?
  14. 14. Copyright © 2015 Active Education peped.org/politicalinvestigations Recent General Elections How have people voted in recent general elections and what has influenced them to do so?
  15. 15. Copyright © 2015 Active Education peped.org/politicalinvestigations Recent general elections • You will be given a breakdown of voting behaviour in the 2001 and 2005 general elections. • You will then need to create your own analysis of voting behaviour in the 2010 and 2015 general elections using these criteria: • Context • Issues and events • Voting behaviour • Results
  16. 16. Copyright © 2015 Active Education peped.org/politicalinvestigations Context 2001 General Election 2005 General Election • Labour previously won election in 1997 • Very likely to be a second term Labour • Problems in run up to election including fuel protests and foot mouth crisis • Conservative Party lagging in • Labour criticise for not more radical agenda but left voters had little option other Labour • Labour’s campaign was focusing on Michael Howard’s failures • Warned a vote for the Lib would allow the Conservatives power • Conservative campaign much improved since 2001 • Lib Dems focused on benefits Lib Lab coalition had achieved Scotland
  17. 17. Copyright © 2015 Active Education peped.org/politicalinvestigations Issues and events 2001 General Election 2005 General Election • Conservatives – ‘last chance to save the pound’ Euro focused campaign (potentially the electorate interest in • Tony Blair confronted by angry partner of a cancer patient on hospital visit • John Prescott punches farm worker • Issues based Conservative campaign – immigration, law order • Avoided mistake of focusing Europe • Both Labour and Conservative promised better services and tax • Lib Dems focused on issues as public services, taxation Iraq war
  18. 18. Copyright © 2015 Active Education peped.org/politicalinvestigations Voting behaviour 2001 General Election 2005 General Election • Some movement in class • High levels of tactical voting • Marginal constituencies in were held for Labour with larger majorities (impact of the Tories out’ campaign?) • Lowest turnout since 1918 – • Labour and Conservative lost support amongst upper/middle class to the Liberal Democrats • Conservatives gained support lower working class who had backed them in the 1980s class Tories) • Women favoured Labour (38%:32%) • Male vote split evenly
  19. 19. Copyright © 2015 Active Education peped.org/politicalinvestigations Results 2001 General Election 2005 General Election • Labour – 40.7% (413 seats) • Conservatives – 31.7% (166 • Liberal Democrats – 18.3% seats) • Plaid Cymru, SNP, Others – (28 seats) • Turnout 59.4% (down by • Labour – 35.2% (355 seats) • Conservatives – 32.3% (192 • Liberal Democrats – 22.1% seats) • Plaid Cymru, SNP, Others – (31 seats) • Turnout 61.5% (up by 2.1%) 2005: “Labour polled 9.5 million votes. That is equivalent to 35.2% of the total, the lowest share of the vote ever recorded for a winning party at a UK general election” (House of Commons research paper 05/33)
  20. 20. Copyright © 2015 Active Education peped.org/politicalinvestigations General Election 2010 and 2015 2010 General Election 2015 General Election Context Issues and events Voting behaviour Results
  21. 21. Copyright © 2015 Active Education peped.org/politicalinvestigations Voting behaviour Which voting behaviour model is the most accurate?
  22. 22. Copyright © 2015 Active Education peped.org/politicalinvestigations Applying what you have learned • Which voting model(s) are the most accurate in explaining voting behaviour in a) the 2010 general election? b) the 2015 general election? • Why? • Explain your answer clearly justifying why your chosen voting model is the most accurate. • Remember you should also give clear reasons as to why other models are not accurate to strengthen your argument.

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