The Importance of the Relevance of the Issue to the Group in Voting Intentions: The Case of the Australian Republic Referendum
Smith, Joanne R.
Terry, Deborah J.
Crosier, Timothy R.
Duck, Julie M.
University of Exeter - Joanne Smith (at the time of publication, the author was at the University of Queensland, Australia)
Basic and Applied Social Psychology
Psychology Press (Taylor & Francis Group)
A questionnaire was distributed on the Australian republic issue to examine the interplay between norms and relevance of the issue to the group on voting intentions. Supporters of an Australian republic (N = 188) indicated the level of support for a republic within their peer group, the relevance of the republic issue to the group, and measures designed to assess voting intentions and other attitude outcomes. Analysis revealed an interaction between normative support and relevance of the issue to the group. On the measure of intention, increasing normative support was associated with increased intention to vote in an attitude-consistent way at both relevance levels, but the effect was heightened when the issue was highly relevant to the group. On the outcomes of willingness to express opinion and perceived personal importance of the republic issue, normative support had a positive effect only when the issue was highly relevant to the group. Mediation analyses revealed that the impact of normative support and group relevance on intention were mediated through perceived personal importance of the republic issue.
This is the author's postprint version of an article whose final and definitive form has been published in the Basic and Applied Social Psychology © 2005 Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc; Basic and Applied Social Psychology is available online at http://www.informaworld.com
Basic and Applied Social Psychology, 27 (2), 2005: pp. 163-170