• When politics means having to say you're sorry: An empirical test of the effectiveness of political apologies

      Kenski, Henry C.; Wabnik, Alisa Ilene, 1970- (The University of Arizona., 1993)
      Politicians are notorious for finding themselves in the middle of scandals that endanger their reputations and careers. How do they get out of it? This study tested four account strategies politicians could use: denials, excuses, justifications, and apologies. Language expectancy theory was applied to test several hypotheses. Results partially supported the concept of apologies as positive expectancy violations, but did not reveal differences among account types in terms of voters' positive impressions, blame attributions, and intent to vote for the politician. Situation, which was not expected to be a relevant factor, did result in large variability. The implications of this study for future research were also explored.