Evidence from the 2020 Campaigns in PennsylvaniaEdited by Stephen K. Medvic, Matthew M. Schousen, and Berwood A. Yost
Given the news media’s focus on national issues and debates, voters might be expected to make decisions about state and local candidates based on their views of the national parties and presidential candidates. However, nationalization as a concept, and the process by which politics becomes nationalized, are not fully understood. Are All Politics Nationalized? addresses this knowledge gap by looking at the behavior of candidates and the factors that influence voters’ electoral choices.
The editors and contributors examine the 2020 elections in six Pennsylvania districts to explore the level of nationalization in campaigns for Congress and state legislature. They also question if politicians are encouraging nationalized behavior and straight ticket voting—especially with down-ballot races.
Are All Politics Nationalized? concludes that issues specific to particular districts—such as fracking and local union politics—still matter, and candidates are eager to connect with voters by highlighting their ties to the local community. National politics do trickle down to local races, but races up and down the ballot are still heavily localized.
Contributors: Sophie Ackert, Andrew Bloeser, Christopher Borick, Kristen Coopie, Angela M. Corbo, J. Wesley Leckrone, Sarah Niebler, Olivia O’Donnell, Benjamin T. Toll, Tarah Williams, and the editors.
Pennsylvania Politics and PolicyEdited by Michelle J. Atherton and J. Wesley Leckrone