Privilege & Voting for Predators: Exploring the Relationship Between Privilege & Voting for Sex Offenders

Reilly Simmons Butler University
Faculty Sponsor(s): Greg Shufeldt Butler University
My paper was inspired by my confusion after several 2016 elections where women were still voting for sexual predators when women are usually the victims of sexual misconduct. My research question was: does privilege affect political party crossover when a candidate is accused of sexual misconduct? I hypothesized that with a woman’s increasing privilege, her likelihood to crossover political parties when a candidate is accused of sexual misconduct would decrease. Therefore, the opposite would be true. As a woman’s privilege decreases, her likelihood of crossing over political parties when a candidate is accused of sexual misconduct increases. I used a split sample survey experiment then ran four bivariate tests. The first bivariate test I conducted measured the impact of partisanship on political party crossover when the candidate is accused of sexual misconduct. The second bivariate test I tested the impact of privilege, controlling for partisanship. The third bivariate test I did differently for men and women. The last bivariate test I did was testing whether privilege – controlling for partisanship – has an impact on my dependent variable – separately among men & women. After conducting these tests, I found my hypothesis to be wrong. A woman’s privilege does not significantly impact whether she is willing to support a candidate accused of sexual misconduct. Partisanship is the pivotal force in determining a woman’s voting habits when the candidate has been accused of sexual misconduct. For men, I found that a male’s increasing privilege will increase his likelihood of crossing over political parties when a candidate has been accused of sexual misconduct.





Political Science
Oral Presentation

When & Where

11:15 AM
Jordan Hall 170