Faculty Scholarly Dissemination Grants


Examining Gender and Authoritarian Values During the 2008 U.S. Presidential Election


Political Science


College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Date Range



We examine the foundations of gender based differences in public opinion toward various policy issues arising in the 2008 U.S. presidential election, specifically gay and lesbian rights, and war. Based on a series of statistical models estimated on nationally representative survey data collected in the fall and winter of the election year, we test the differential influence of authoritarian predispositions across genders. We examine how the opinions of men and women differ under the condition of perceived threat, which triggers the influence of authoritarianism. The results help explain a source of the "gender gap", why in the aggregate opinions of men and women diverge.

Conference Name

118th Annual Michigan Academy Conference

Conference Location

Alma, Michigan

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