Public Support for Economic and Military Coercion and Audience Costs
British Journal of Politics and International Relations
Wiley / Political Studies Association
Reason for embargo
I specify the role public support for economic and military coercion and reactions to executive inconsistencies play in generating and/or weakening approval for executives. In times of international crises, these factors may compete against each other when it comes to determining public approval. To examine this claim, I conducted a survey experiment on a representative sample of adults to determine when audiences will support economic or military coercion, and how this willingness to support specific coercive action affects their evaluation of the executive’s handling of international crises. I find that public policy preferences can have a stronger effect than a preference for having a leader behave consistently. Specifically, I find that, (1) executive inconsistency is not punished when a leader backs down from a military commitment in a non-threatening crisis, (2) executive inconsistencies are not only punished in military disputes but also in cases of economic coercion (punishment is in fact more prominent in sanctions cases), and (3) executive inconsistency can be punished both in major and lesser conflicts.
This work was supported by the National Science Foundation (SES-1123291). Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.
This is the author accepted manuscript. The final version is available from Wiley via the DOI in this record.
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