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All Politics Are Local

All Politics Are Local Inquiries into the domestic determinants of international behavior, including democratic peace arguments, build on the pioneering work of Mueller by presupposing that individuals in a democracy are extremely sensitive to casualties. The authors hypothesize that this relationship is, in part, dependent on the rate at which casualties accumulate and the local variation in these costs. Employing, for the first time, spatially disaggregated “killed in action” data, the authors offer a multivariate logit model of individual opinion on the administration's policies in Vietnam as a function of both local- and national-level casualties. The authors find that recent county-level losses and partisanship are important predictors of individual opinion on the president's policies early in the war as marginal casualties increased but are less helpful in understanding opinion in the war's later years when marginal casualties declined. Conversely, a number of individual-level variables that had minimal explanatory power at the beginning of the conflict become more important. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Conflict Resolution SAGE

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References (41)

Publisher
SAGE
Copyright
Copyright © by SAGE Publications
ISSN
0022-0027
eISSN
1552-8766
DOI
10.1177/0022002797041005004
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Inquiries into the domestic determinants of international behavior, including democratic peace arguments, build on the pioneering work of Mueller by presupposing that individuals in a democracy are extremely sensitive to casualties. The authors hypothesize that this relationship is, in part, dependent on the rate at which casualties accumulate and the local variation in these costs. Employing, for the first time, spatially disaggregated “killed in action” data, the authors offer a multivariate logit model of individual opinion on the administration's policies in Vietnam as a function of both local- and national-level casualties. The authors find that recent county-level losses and partisanship are important predictors of individual opinion on the president's policies early in the war as marginal casualties increased but are less helpful in understanding opinion in the war's later years when marginal casualties declined. Conversely, a number of individual-level variables that had minimal explanatory power at the beginning of the conflict become more important.

Journal

Journal of Conflict ResolutionSAGE

Published: Oct 1, 1997

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