Will voters this fall be voting for or against Donald Trump, even though he isn’t on the ballot? Will they be voting on national issues, such as immigration or relations with North Korea, even when the election is for city council or mayor? If all politics is ultimately local, then the answer should be no. Instead, most assume that national issues will dominate vote choice up and down the ballot in 2018. For Daniel Hopkins
, this is not a new phenomenon: the United States has been nationalizing for a long time, and political behavior has long reflected it. Hopkins is the author of The Increasingly United States: How and Why American Political Behavior Nationalized
(University of Chicago Press, 2018). He is associate professor in the Political Science Department at the University of Pennsylvania.
In his new book, Hopkins marshals an incredible amount of data, from reanalysis of existing data to newly collected surveys to original experiments. From this mound of data, he shows how US politics has nationalized and why. The increasingly national news media and party polarization has change the way voters consume political information and what they are consuming. The result is an orientation of parties to national issues and political behavior that reflects this shift.