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3rd District campaign mailers had mixed message

first_imgAs political campaigns look for new ways to reach voters and earn their support, some traditions hold true. Campaign mailers once again flourished in Clark County, specifically relating to candidates in the 3rd Congressional District race.A few pieces of literature were sent before the primary, but many likely noticed their mailboxes filling with campaign materials in the weeks before the Nov. 6 election. Six mailers alone went out in the days preceding the election.Along with digital advertising, print materials represent a large chunk of campaign spending.Are these mailers even effective?If you ask Travis Ridout, professor of government and public policy with Washington State University, the answer is not really.Ridout said there’s not a lot of solid research into the impact of campaign mailers — despite their popularity. But he suspects they have an impact, albeit a small one.“One reason they may be useful is that they can be targeted to specific types of voters, e.g., you can send a message about child care to a mother of young children, and you can ignore voters whom you presume are going to support the other candidate,” Ridout said. “So that makes mailers particularly efficient. They can also help to build name recognition for a candidate — and remind voters when ballots are due.”But can mailers influence a voter to vote for a specific candidate?A 2017 study conducted by two political scientists in California found mailers, and outreach in general by candidates and volunteers, had no “measurable change in voting incomes,” as reported by The Atlantic.last_img read more

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