Who Signs? Ballot Petition Signatures as Political Participation
Who signs ballot initiative petitions? Do they fit a particular socio-political and demographic profile of a likely voter, or are they peripheral voters who become engaged in the political process due to the issue at hand? And are some citizens who sign petitions more likely to have valid signatures than others? Scholars have been slow to assess who is likely to become engaged in perhaps one of the most common forms of political participation: signing a ballot petitions. Drawing on an original dataset of individual-level data, we use GIS and logit models to test which citizens were more likely to sign a contoversial local ballot petition, as well as to determine who was likely to sign a valid (or invalid) petition.
Boehmke, Frederick J. and R. Michael Alvarez. 2014. "Where the good signatures are: Signature collection and initiative qualification in California," The Social Science Journal, online. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.soscij.2014.06.001. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.soscij.2014.06.001
Bowler, Shaun, and Todd Donovan. 2002. "Democracy, Institutions and Attitudes about Citizen Influence on Government." British Journal of Political Science 32: 371-390. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0007123402000157
Bowler, Shaun, Todd Donovan, and Caroline Tolbert, eds. 1998. Citizens as Legislators: Direct Democracy in the United States. Columbus: Ohio State University Press.
Broder, David S. 2000. Democracy Derailed: Initiative Campaigns and the Power of Money. New York, NY: Harvest.
Button, James W., Barbara A. Rienzo and Kenneth D. Wald. 1997. Private Lives, Public Conflicts: Battles Over Gay Rights in American Communities. Washington, DC: Congressional Quarterly Press.
Delli Carpini, Michael X. Scott Keeter. 1996. What Americans Know About Politics and Why It Matters. New Haven: Yale University Press.
Donovan, Todd and Daniel A Smith. 2008. "Identifying and Preventing Signature Fraud on Ballot Measure Petitions." In Election Fraud: Detecting and Deterring Electoral Manipulation, eds. R. Michael Alvarez, Thad E. Hall, and Susan D. Hyde. Washington, DC: Brookings Institution Press.
Donovan, Todd, Caroline Tolbert, and Daniel A. Smith. 2009. "Political Engagement, Mobilization and Direct Democracy." Public Opinion Quarterly 73: 98-118. https://doi.org/10.1093/poq/nfp017
Haider-Markel, Donald P., and Mark Joslyn. 2008. "Understanding Beliefs about the Origins of Homosexuality and Subsequent Support for Gay Rights An Empirical Test of Attribution Theory." Public Opinion Quarterly 72: 291-310. https://doi.org/10.1093/poq/nfn015
Helson, Harry, Robert R. Blake, and Jane Srygley Mouton. 1956. "Petition-Signing as Adjustment to Situational and Personal Factors." Journal of Social Psychology 48: 3-10. https://doi.org/10.1080/00224545.1958.9919261
Huckfeldt, Robert and John Sprague. 1995. Citizens, Politics, and Social Communication: Information and Influence in an Election Campaign. New York: Cambridge University Press. https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511664113
Schlozman, Kay Lehman, Sidney Verba, and Henry E. Brady. 2012. The Unheavenly Chorus: Unequal Political Voice and the Broken Promise of American Democracy. Princeton: Princeton University Press. https://doi.org/10.1515/9781400841912
Loftus, Jeni. 2001. "America's Liberalization in Attitudes toward Homosexuality, 1973 to 1998." American Sociological Review 66: 762-782. https://doi.org/10.2307/3088957
Lupia, Arthur. 1994. "Shortcuts versus Encyclopedias: Information and Voting Behavior in California Insurance Reform Elections." American Political Science Review 88: 63-76. https://doi.org/10.2307/2944882
Magleby, David. 1984. Direct Legislation: Voting on Ballot Propositions in the United States. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.
Magleby, David and Kelly Patterson. 1998. "Consultants and Direct Democracy." PS: Political Science and Politics 31: 160-164. https://doi.org/10.2307/420244 https://doi.org/10.1017/S1049096500054196
Matsusaka, John G. 2004. For the Many or the Few: The Initiative, Public Policy, and American Democracy. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. https://doi.org/10.7208/chicago/9780226510873.001.0001
Nieman, Max, and M. Gottdiener. 1982. "The Relevance of the Qualifying Stage of Initiative Politics: The Case of Petition Signing." Social Science Quarterly 63:582-588.
Parry, Janine A., Daniel A. Smith, and Shayne Henry. 2011. "The Impact of Petition Signing on Voter Turnout." Political Behavior 34: 117-36. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11109-011-9161-1
Peterson, Paul E. 1981. City Limits. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. https://doi.org/10.7208/chicago/9780226922645.001.0001
Rimmerman, Craig A., Kenneth D. Wald and Clyde Wilcox, eds. 2000. The Politics of Gay Rights. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Rosenstone, Steven J. and John Mark Hansen. 1993. Mobilization, Participation, and Democracy in America. New York, NY, Macmillan Publishing Company.
Sapiro, Virginia, and Conover, Pamela Johnston. 1997. "The variable gender bias of electoral politics: Gender and Context in the 1992 U.S. Election," British Journal of Political Science 27: 497–523. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0007123497000240
Schlozman, Kay Lehman, Burns, Nancy, and Verba, Sidney. 1994. "Gender and the pathways to participation: the role of resources," Journal of Politics 56: 963–90. https://doi.org/10.2307/2132069
Smith, Daniel A. 2012. "Direct Democracy—Regulating the 'Will of the People,'" in Matthew Streb, ed., Law and Election Politics: The Rules of the Game, 2nd edition. New York: Routledge.
Smith, Daniel A. 1998. Tax Crusaders and the Politics of Direct Democracy. NY: Routledge.
Smith, Daniel A., and Caroline J. Tolbert. 2004. Educated by Initiative: The Effects of Direct Democracy on Citizens and Political Organizations in the American States. Ann Arbor, MI: University of Michigan Press. https://doi.org/10.3998/mpub.11467
Stein, Robert M., Keith E. Hamm, Patricia K. Freeman. 1983. "An Analysis of Support for Tax Limitation Referenda." Public Choice 40: 187-194. https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00118520
Verba, Sidney, Burns, Nancy, and Schlozman, Kay Lehman. 1997. "Knowing and caring about politics: gender and political engagement," Journal of Politics 59: 1051–72. https://doi.org/10.2307/2998592
Verba, Sidney and Norman H. Nie. 1972. Participation in America: Political Democracy and Social Equality. New York: Harper and Row.
Verba, Sidney, Kay Lehman Schlozman, and Henry E. Brady. 1995. Voice and Equality: Civic Voluntarism in American Politics. Cambridge, MA, Harvard University Press.
Wolfinger, Raymond E. and Stephen J. Rosenstone. 1980. Who Votes? New Haven, CT, Yale University Press.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.
Authors who publish with American Review of Politics agree to the following terms:
The Author retains copyright in the Work, where the term “Work” shall include all digital objects that may result in subsequent electronic publication or distribution.
Upon acceptance of the Work, the author shall grant to the Publisher the right of first publication of the Work.
The Author shall grant to the Publisher and its agents the nonexclusive perpetual right and license to publish, archive, and make accessible the Work in whole or in part in all forms of media now or hereafter known under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 License or its equivalent, which, for the avoidance of doubt, allows others to copy, distribute, and transmit the Work under the following conditions:
Attribution: other users must attribute the Work in the manner specified by the author as indicated on the journal Web site;
Non-Commercial: the materials may not be used for commercial purposes;
Share Alike: If you remix, transform, or build upon the material, you must distribute your contributions under the same license as the original.
with the understanding that the above condition can be waived with permission from the Author and that where the Work or any of its elements is in the public domain under applicable law, that status is in no way affected by the license.
The Author is able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the nonexclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the Work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), as long as there is provided in the document an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.
Authors are permitted and encouraged to post online a pre-publication manuscript (but not the Publisher’s final formatted PDF version of the Work) in institutional repositories or on their Websites prior to and during the submission process, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work (see The Effect of Open Access). Any such posting made before acceptance and publication of the Work shall be updated upon publication to include a reference to the Publisher-assigned DOI (Digital Object Identifier) and a link to the online abstract for the final published Work in the Journal.
Upon Publisher’s request, the Author agrees to furnish promptly to Publisher, at the Author’s own expense, written evidence of the permissions, licenses, and consents for use of third-party material included within the Work, except as determined by Publisher to be covered by the principles of Fair Use.
The Author represents and warrants that:
the Work is the Author’s original work;
the Author has not transferred, and will not transfer, exclusive rights in the Work to any third party;
the Work is not pending review or under consideration by another publisher;
the Work has not previously been published;
the Work contains no misrepresentation or infringement of the Work or property of other authors or third parties; and
the Work contains no libel, invasion of privacy, or other unlawful matter.
The Author agrees to indemnify and hold Publisher harmless from Author’s breach of the representations and warranties contained in Paragraph 6 above, as well as any claim or proceeding relating to Publisher’s use and publication of any content contained in the Work, including third-party content.