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Impact of the Louisville Courier-Journal's Editorial Endorsements on the Outcome of Local Judicial Elections

NCJ Number
Judicature Volume: 73 Issue: 2 Dated: (August-September 1989) Pages: 108-112
J Goldstein
Date Published
5 pages
This article analyzes the impact of the Louisville Courier-Journal's editorial endorsements on electoral choice in races for the local district court.
Data came from two polls conducted in Jefferson County (Louisville), Ky., during the spring of 1985. The first survey involved face-to-face interviews of a random sample of 240 households. The second data source was an exit poll during the May 1985 primary election. A total of 713 respondents were interviewed. Data show that the newspaper endorsements had a large gross impact on the vote, but its influence on electoral outcomes was muted by the fact that approximately half of the voters used it as a positive referent, and the other half used it as a negative referent. Findings suggest that newspaper endorsements will have the greatest impact in crowded races with several candidates to share the vote of citizens who use the paper as a negative referent. The voters most likely to use the editorial endorsements tended to be better educated, more ideological, and politically aware. These persons are more likely to vote, suggesting they will have a strong impact in elections with small turnouts. 4 tables, 22 footnotes.