Issue ownership trends and tensions in 2008: Obama, the transformative democrat?
Full article citation: Cole, H.J. and Hawthorne, J. (2013) “Issue ownership trends and tensions in 2008: Obama, the transformative democrat?” Argumentation and Advocacy, 50(2), 72-87.
Abstract: Issue ownership theory posits that candidates and political parties own certain issues and ownership of issues is built on reputation over time. By analyzing the content of nomination acceptance speeches and presidential debates and comparing those findings with public polling results, this study tests issue ownership theory in the 2008 general election. This study found both a continuation of general trends as well as significant variations from issue ownership assumptions. These findings suggest that the 2008 election was one in which the candidates had more to gain by discussing certain issues and that party owned issues may be fluctuating.
Keywords: Issue ownership, presidential debates, nomination acceptance speeches, 2008 election