Obama’s Voter Mobilization Was Barely More Effective than Romney’s

Does the 2012 Obama campaign deserve the hype? Many journalists have praised the technological and strategic advantage of Obama over Romney’s campaign. The 2012 Obama campaign is often described as an extension and improvement of the 2008 effort, which has been credited as one of the first campaigns to make extensive use of rigorous academic findings about effective Get out the Vote (GOTV) and persuasion techniques. Yet, as some academics have pointed out – the final vote margins were very close to predictions that would be obtained with no effect of the campaign, indicating that, perhaps, the new campaign techniques had minimal effects or that Obama’s advantage was neutralized by an equally savvy Romney campaign. [cont.]

Ryan Enos (Harvard) & Anthony Fowler (Harvard), The Monkey Cage