Seems to me that in the 2008 prez election, the folks in Swing States who basked in all that attention and commercials and candidate visits should score higher in campaign knowledge -- controlling for a bunch of other factors -- than those of us who live in states where the outcomes were all but decided.
Seems that way. But not.
My quick-and-dirty-yet-damned-comprehensive analysis found no real significant difference between people living in a group of states I labeled "swing" and the rest of the U.S. on a set of questions specifically about the two major candidates (what state they're from, what's their religion) or on a set of policy questions (does Obama favor this, does McCain favor that).
Zero. Nada. Nuthin. Hours of careful consideration, recoding, analysis, drinking, more analysis, still more drinking, recoding the recoding, serious drinking, and a final stab at analysis turned up zero, nada, nuthin. Well, I did get a headache. I'm sure it's from the computer screen and SPSS, not the drinking.
It's a damnably solid idea -- that people lathered with attention, where the stakes were higher, should have gleaned a little more campaign attention than similar folks in states that received little attention. But noooo. At least not yet. And I don't have high hopes of magically making the results look any prettier.
Just thought you'd like to know. BTW, I'm open to suggestions on why this seems to be the case. Email them to me, along with coupon for more Scotch.