Title

The Flip Side of The Bread and Butter State: A Case Study of Television Advertisements within the Flipped Seats of Minnesota’s 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 8th Congressional Districts.

Submitter and Co-author information

Caley Hewitt, University of WindsorFollow

Standing

Undergraduate

Type of Proposal

Oral Research Presentation

Challenges Theme

Open Challenge

Faculty

Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences

Faculty Sponsor

Dr. Kyle Asquith

Abstract/Description of Original Work

This paper examines the practices of political branding that inform American election campaigns, deploying concepts such as ethical surplus, scripted messages, emotional appeal, and authenticity. Many politicians use such appeals to achieve the three goals of television campaign advertising: voter choice, voter mobilization, and voter acquisition. With reference to these concepts, my research question asks how candidates branded themselves in contrast to how their opponents branded them. This question was answered using the case study of Minnesota’s 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 8th congressional districts because these four seats switched parties during the 2018 midterm election. I examined a total of 77 ads: 28 positive and 47 negative. Within these districts, there was one female candidate and seven male candidates. The findings showed that all the candidates, whether they won or lost, employed ethical surplus, scripted messages, emotional appeals and authenticity, trying to make themselves look better or their opponent look worse. All of these ads, positive or negative, attempted to address the three goals of television campaign advertising and spread their message through scripted emotional appeals while trying to create ethical surplus and authenticity with their constituents. This research shows the differences between political parties in television advertisements and the impact that these ads may have. With the 2020 United States Election coming up on November 3rd, 2020, this research can offer valuable insight into campaign tactics, and the branding of politicians in television advertisements for flipping seats.

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The Flip Side of The Bread and Butter State: A Case Study of Television Advertisements within the Flipped Seats of Minnesota’s 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 8th Congressional Districts.

This paper examines the practices of political branding that inform American election campaigns, deploying concepts such as ethical surplus, scripted messages, emotional appeal, and authenticity. Many politicians use such appeals to achieve the three goals of television campaign advertising: voter choice, voter mobilization, and voter acquisition. With reference to these concepts, my research question asks how candidates branded themselves in contrast to how their opponents branded them. This question was answered using the case study of Minnesota’s 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 8th congressional districts because these four seats switched parties during the 2018 midterm election. I examined a total of 77 ads: 28 positive and 47 negative. Within these districts, there was one female candidate and seven male candidates. The findings showed that all the candidates, whether they won or lost, employed ethical surplus, scripted messages, emotional appeals and authenticity, trying to make themselves look better or their opponent look worse. All of these ads, positive or negative, attempted to address the three goals of television campaign advertising and spread their message through scripted emotional appeals while trying to create ethical surplus and authenticity with their constituents. This research shows the differences between political parties in television advertisements and the impact that these ads may have. With the 2020 United States Election coming up on November 3rd, 2020, this research can offer valuable insight into campaign tactics, and the branding of politicians in television advertisements for flipping seats.