Peace & Justice

This is the blog of the Commission on Peace and Justice for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany, New York.

Thursday, November 01, 2012

The power of negative ads

The Times Union reports today that a Union College psychology professor, along with researchers from the University of Belgrade Yale University, have found that negative political ads appear to work well, and therefore, we should expect more of them in the future.

A Union College psychology professor has found that negative political attitudes (i.e. "I don't like Romney") are stronger than positive attitudes (i.e. "I like Obama"). George Bizer found those feelings only strengthened when people think more deeply about the issues involved, according to a new paper he recently published in the British Journal of Social Psychology.

. . .

After people formed positive or negative opinions about the candidates, those who disliked a candidate felt more strongly about their distaste. And it wasn't just a knee-jerk reaction. Those who disliked a candidate dug in deeper the more they had a chance to reflect on their choice. In other words, it's more effective for a political campaign to get voters to dislike a candidate. Once they form a negative opinion, they're far less likely to change it.

Kind of makes you think. Or does it? You can read more here.