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PublisherWALTER DE GRUYTER GMBH
CitationSocial Desirability Bias in the 2016 Presidential Election 2016, 14 (4) The Forum
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AbstractPartisanship is a stable trait but expressions of partisan preferences can vary according to social context. When particular preferences become socially undesirable, some individuals refrain from expressing them in public, even in relatively anonymous settings such as surveys and polls. In this study, we rely on the psychological trait of self-monitoring to show that Americans who are more likely to adjust their behaviors to comply with social norms (i.e. high self-monitors) were less likely to express support for Donald Trump during the 2016 Presidential Election. In turn, as self-monitoring decreases, we find that the tendency to express support for Trump increases. This study suggests that - at least for some individuals - there may have been a tendency in 2016 to repress expressed support for Donald Trump in order to mask socially undesirable attitudes.
Note12 month embargo; Published Online: 22 February 2017.
VersionFinal published version