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Partisans and PartnersThe Politics of the Post-Keynesian Society$
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Josh Pacewicz

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780226402550

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226402727.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 24 September 2021

What Regular People Think

What Regular People Think

(p.226) Eight What Regular People Think
Partisans and Partners

Josh Pacewicz

University of Chicago Press

This chapter shows how community changes impact residents’ political reasoning and develops a new typology of contemporary American voters. The chapter characterizes the book’s findings as indicative of a shift from partisan politics embedded in community governance (organizational overlap between community and party leaders) to partisan politics disembedded from community governance (separation and antagonism between community and party leaders). The chapter then reprises arguments about peoples’ tendency to use community institutions as a heuristic for understanding partisan politics and draws on a panel of interviews with 104 people in both cities to illustrate that people respond to changes in their community’s public sphere in one of three ideal-typical ways: as traditional voters, partners, and partisans. Traditional voters are effectively living in the past, see community life as a labor-business struggle, and identify with one community side and a party by extension. Partners perceive a community-politics tension and disaffiliate from politics, which they see as excessively divisive and devoid of partnership. Partisans criticize changes in their community and look to politics as panacea, often embracing populist, fringy, and hyper-partisan movements like the Tea Party.

Keywords:   public sphere, political preference formation, political heuristics, tea party

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