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Anthony Torretti Prof.

Metoyer PSCI 494-01 November 20th, 2012 Motivated Skepticism in Voter Information Processing Introduction In a democracy, where voters are at least partially responsible for the resulting decisions and decision-makers, it is important for the voting public to be capable of making well-informed policy decisions. Today's political environment, however, is a war-zone of conflicting, and sometimes misleading information (Newman, Just, and Krigler 1992). Such a reality raises a concern about how the average voter navigates the flotsam and jetsam of political factoids. Voters cannot be expected to thoroughly research each claim, so what exactly does the voter utilize in order to sort good information from the bad? It often seems that different voters have conflicting ideas about what political information is to be considered dubious (Farmer, B. R., 2006). The overall goal of this research is to focus on how voters designate new political information as bad. Over the course of my research, I suspect to find that the average voter is more likely to express skepticism towards claims that contradict his or her own political narrative, than claims that do not contradict that narrative. The phenomenon of doubting evidence that contradicts our bias is known as motivated skepticism, a small part of the larger concept of motivated reasoning (Ditto & David, 1992). This has been a topic of study by behavioral scientists for decades, but what relevance does it have to democratic politics? No human being is completely devoid of preconceived notions, so the expectation of completely unbiased decisions by voters is fairly unrealistic (Anderson 1981). Rather, the concern lies in whether or not such biases are strong enough to skew the voter's perception of political information. (Gamson 1992) Different scholars have developed different outlooks on the ability for voters to sufficiently process new political information. Some express doubt about the ability of the

voting public to overcome bias in decision-making, claiming that the individual has more incentive to accept information according to her or his socially-influenced bias than the voter has to accept information according to critical thinking and analysis (Caplan 2008) (Kulinski and Quirk 1998). Other outlooks are more optimistic, pointing out that the voter is more receptive to political information, regardless of bias, if he or she feels that the information has functional use. (Donsbach 2009) Regardless of which outlook one maintains, it is apparent that the way voters process new political information, and the role motivated skepticism plays in that processing, has dire ramifications for a democratic system. Literature Review With such ramifications, it is no surprise that other scholars have tackled the notion of motivated skepticism in political information processing before. One of the more recent and thorough studies was performed by having participants assess several different arguments on the issues of gun control and affirmative action (Taber & Lodge 2006). In the study, each participant was asked to evaluate supporting and opposing arguments for different positions on two issues in a computer simulation. The results of the study indicated that the participants had a substantial tendency to deem whichever argument that supported their own biases as the stronger argument. Furthermore, when the participants were allowed to search through sources freely, they were more likely to seek out information that supported their own point of view. Similar trends are observed in other research. In my own experiment, in which research participants were presented with a fictional political issue and tasked with choosing their own research sources, the participants overwhelmingly relied on sources that framed the fictional issue within their preconceived political narrative (Torretti 2012). In both cases, however, the results struggle with representing the population outside of the narrow group of participants. The Taber & Lodge study, for example, deals exclusively with college-freshman participants from a fixed geographic region. While my own research dealt with a slightly-more diverse set of participants, the sample size was fairly small and dealt primarily with participants aged 18-24 in

the Southern Californian cities of Murrieta and San Marcos. Furthermore, a disadvantage with formal controlled experiments or surveys that deal with politics is that only individuals who have strong political interest show enthusiastic participation. This tends to skew the results in the direction of more passionate voters while neglecting the voting mainstream. (Torretti 2012) In order to get an accurate model of information processing and motivated skepticism among voters, an experimental model needs to address two shortfalls: the aversion of the average voter to politics and the geographical narrowness of the sampling pool. Methodology The model I will be adopting for this research will forgo the controlled survey or experimental model in favor of an interview model of research. While this model lacks the quantitative rigor of the above methods, this technique will make it easier to address the two major shortcomings of past research. The experiment will be divided into two portions: a face-to-face, man on the street-style interview and a randomized online video-chat interview. The first portion will consist of me conducting face-to-face interviews with voluntary participants in nearby metropolitan areas. A brief series of question and answers requires far less participant investment than a prolonged experiment and survey, and is thus more likely to retain interest than the previously mentioned models. The second portion is the randomized video-chat interview, and will consist of me conducting the same interview as the first portion, except via a randomized online video-chat interface such as Chatroulette, Omegle, etc. The intent behind this second portion is to get a more geographically dispersed portion of the voting public, in order to get a more accurate rendition of voter thought patterns. Furthermore, the digital barrier provided by internet communications has potential to provide franker discussion of the matters at hand. This method is not without disadvantages: the sample size will be narrower given the time frame, and any qualitative assessment of personal interactions is subject to the disadvantage of limited perspective. Such drawbacks, however, are compensated for by the advantages this model would have over prevailing experimental methods for assessing voter bias.

In both portions, the interview is presented to the participant as an opportunity to discuss political issues that s/he is interested in. The intention is to gauge which issues the participant is most interested in, and what that participants stance is on that issue. Once the opinion is revealed, I will then engage the participant in a discussion on those views and will mention two different facts regarding the issue. In this interview, both of the facts mentioned will be fabricated from a fictional source. One fact, however, will be supportive of the participant's opinion, while the other fact contradicts it. Over the course of the discussion, I will be monitoring the participant's reaction to each fact, and keep track of any responses that the participant makes specifically to those facts. The participants response will be analyzed on two levels, how they appear to react to the fact and what verbal responses they give to my claims. Each response-type will be given a rating of 1 to 7. A reaction or response rated 1 is one that expresses strong apprehension towards a claim, whereas a reaction rated 7 is one that indicates strong support toward the claim. A response rated 4 indicates no notable response, or a neutral response. The purpose, here, is to see which facts the participant finds dubious or suspect. The interview will provide me an opportunity to obtain an in-depth qualitative analysis of how individuals process different political arguments in relation to their preexisting beliefs, and what responses they give to such arguments. Ultimately, while the notion of motivated skepticism in voter thought-processes has been explored in research before, it has been hindered by methodological shortcomings that favor politically motivated individuals in sample set lacking in diversity. What this new proposed model lacks in control and isolation, is made up for with a comprehensiveness of sampling size and the flexibility of a qualitative analysis model. Voter information processing, and how it affects democracy, is a vital field of research that should hold the attention of behavioral and political scientists alike. In the end, a government by the people can only be as effective as the minds that shape it.

Research Process Portion 1: In-Person Interviews My interviews for the in-person segment of my research were conducted in the city of Riverside, California on October 26th, 2012. I chose a public, well-traveled location near the citys courthouse and approached people individually with interview requests. I introduced myself as a student journalist writing about different voices in the forthcoming election. The intention here was to create a more relaxed, informal environment that is typically lacking in a strictly survey or experimental one. By establishing this tone for the interview, the hopes were to mitigate the effects of satisficing that often arise in surveys and other interviews. (Groves et al, 2011) While this approach was met generally with warm reactions, a few seemed apprehensive when the topic of the interview as disclosed. This was expected to a certain extent. Previous research has already established that a certain number of participants in political research studies or surveys display distaste for politics in general. In media research where a participant has the choice of choosing between political and entertainment messages, a considerable amount of participants will choose to view entertainment messages even when they have access to political messages that are in line with their views. (Knobloch-Westerwick & Kleinman, 2011) In the case of this particular research segment, most of those who displayed an apprehension towards political topics chose to not participate in the interview. Overall, this portion of the interview process lasted for around 4 hours. During that time, I managed to obtain 27 interviews, which are detailed in Appendix A. Each interview began with a discussion of the general state of the United States and its elections. This initial process was used to approximate the participants general political leaning. Its important to note that explicit party or ideological identification was never directly asked in these interviews. Since the current nature of partisan politics is so rife with strong rhetoric and contention, it was deemed necessary to omit direct questioning about party identification in order to maintain the easy-going tone I desired for the interview.

After the participant and I briefly discussed the elections in general, the participant was asked what issue s/he prioritized in the then-upcoming election. Once the participants topic choice was stated, the interview was led into a more in-depth discussion of the topic. Over the course of this part of the discussion, I would slip in two different facts from two different non-existent sources. With each revelation, I would take note of any notable response. This conversation would go on for the next few minutes before I thanked them for their time and ended the interview. Portion 2: Online Chat Interface Interviews While my initial impressions led me to believe that conducting online interviews would be easier and more effective than the same process done in-person, the second portion of my research was actually the more difficult of the two. This is partially due to the demographic distribution of randomized online chat users. From first-hand experience, the majority of users encountered on both Omegle and Chatroulette were either minors or individuals from outside the U.S. region. Even when voting-age U.S residents were found, maintaining interest and intention was far more difficult than it was in person. On websites like Omegle, the user can disconnect from the current conversation with a simple mouse-click. This means that a user can immediately disengage from a conversation without any social engagement or repercussions, whereas individuals in the face-to-face portion who expressed a lack of interest still behaved according to some code of etiquette. It was common for online users to disconnect mid-interview, while most in-person participants participated in the full interview once the conversation began. As a result, only 18 full interviews were conducted within the same time frame as the in-person portion. Apart from this setback, the interview experiences were largely similar between the in-person and online portions. The results of these 18 interviews can be found in Appendix B. Shortcomings In both research portions, the sample sizes present a significant setback in trying to make any general conclusions about motivated skepticism and voter information processing. Furthermore, the use of the online chat interface did not sufficiently solve the problem of geographic sample distribution

that was observed in similar studies. While this idea has some promise, a more specialized interface in which users can be randomized within a set geographic region and age range would be needed in order for this method of interviewing to be utilized in a research context. With all of that said, even the limited number of interviews obtained is enough to analyze some of the reactions a voter displays when confronted with claims and sources that contradict the voters established reality. Results: Rationalization for Motivated Skepticism Overall, participants tended to hold claims they disagreed with to a higher level of scrutiny than claims that they agreed with. Even if it seemed like the participant had never heard the supporting claim before, the participant was more likely to give a positive or indifferent response to the claim than a negative one. Respondents were asked their reasoning for their skepticism, or support, towards a certain claim. While the specifics of individual rationalizations varied from participant to participant, there were some over-arching arguments that arose throughout the various responses. General Motivation General motivation is when individuals expressed support or skepticism for a claim, without being able to give a specific reason why. Often, general motivation was associated with responses that were not very intense. Typically, response rated 3 or 5 were ones likely to be associated with a general motivation. General motivation is often expressed by a generic statement of agreement and a vague recollection of having heard the information before. For example, one respondent expressed general doubt in a claim by saying something akin to I dont know about thatIve heard that before, and it sounds fishy to me. A general motivation response represents a kind of thinking that might have established views and opinions, but lacks the confidence or facts to make an assertive response with. Motivated Skepticism of Credibility Generally, respondents were more likely to take issue with the credibility of a claim if it did not already fall in line with how they felt on the issue. Credibility-based responses had a more diverse range than more general responses. Oftentimes, credibility-based skepticism was expressed in the form

of the question. It was not unusual for the source, methodology, or timeliness of the claim to be called into question. The issue with these types of response is not necessarily the reasoning expressed by this response. It is all too important for voters to scrutinize their information sources. However, such important questions were overwhelmingly geared towards claims that the respondent simply did not agree with. When a respondent did bring up the credibility of a claim they agreed with, it was typically to bring up a trustworthy source from which they had heard the claim before. Motivated skepticism of credibility represents the right kind of thinking applied incorrectly. Anecdotal Skepticism It was not unusual for respondents to cite a personal experience, or an individualized incident, as rationalization for doubt or agreement with a certain claim. This way of thinking is problematic in the fact that it ignores any kind of systemic or over-arching reality in favor of isolated incidents that do not necessarily have a connection to larger trends. For instance, in response to a claim about a decline in the unemployment rate, a respondent expressed disagreement with the claim and cited his own struggles for employment as evidence. However, it is easily possible for the respondent to struggle with finding employment without affecting the decline or growth in the unemployment rate. For the average voter, its much easier to cite individual observations or experiences than it is to cite overarching trends. Conspiratorial Skepticism While rarer than the other forms of motivated skepticism, conspiratorial skepticism is notable in the strength of its expression in individuals. An individual who expresses conspiratorial skepticism towards a claim ignores the content of the claim altogether in favor of associating the claim with a larger, insidious force. For instance, respondents who brought up the issue of the Benghazi attack tended to express conspiratorial skepticism towards the claim that information in the wake of the attack was mixed. When asked for specifics, they would refer to the Benghazi incident as a cover up. While there were responses on other topics that were conspiratorial in nature, those that brought up the

Benghazi issue were the most likely of respondents to give conspiratorial responses. With this kind of response, an opposing claim is considered invalid-by-association. Not only is the opposing claim invalid, but its a deliberately spread deception by a large sinister force in order to accomplish a particular agenda. Conspiratorial responses were almost always linked with response scores of 1 and 2, indicating very strong disagreement with the claim. These types of responses represent a small, but sometimes problematic, segment of the voting population. Other Responses Not every response represented explicit agreement or disagreement with a specific claim, even when the respondent demonstrated a clear leaning to one side of the issue over the other. Some voters seem to try their best to get both sides of an issue, even if it means being exposed to claims that they do not agree with. An even smaller amount of the respondents were simply undecided on the issue they brought up. For them, new claims would add to the pool of information they utilize to come to a final decision about a particular issue that society faces. Given the small size and limited scope of this research, it is possible that the range of response on display here is only the beginning. Conclusion Ultimately, while respondents tended to assign more skepticism to contradictory claims than supporting ones, the limitations of this study make it difficult to claim that motivated skepticism is widely prevalent in the minds of the voter public. What this study does, however, is augment previous research with a more detailed analysis of the types of response and under what circumstances respondents tend to give them. This study then, is more of a starting point in research than an extensively conclusive study. Weve seen in this study that the respondents utilize a variety of rationalizations to validate not only their motivated skepticism, but also their support for claims that they agree with. Despite the extent of this studys limitations, were provided with an illuminated look into the process of voter information processing and the role that motivated skepticism can play in it. What ramifications that this may have for American democracy, is for future researchers to decide.

Works Cited
Anderson, Norman H. 1981. Foundations of Information Integration Theory. San Diego: Academic Press. Caplan, B D. 2008. The Myth of the Rational Voter: Why Democracies Choose Bad Policies. Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press. Ditto, P H., and David F. L. 1992. "Motivated Skepticism: Use of Differential Decision Criteria For Preferred and Nonpreferred Conclusions." Journal Of Personality And Social Psychology 63, no. 4: 568-584. Donsbach, W. 2009. Cognitive Dissonance TheoryRoller Coaster Career: How Communication Research Adapted the Theory of Cognitive Dissonance. Media Choice: A Theoretical and Empirical Overview. 128-149. London: Routledge Press Farmer, Brian R. 2006. American Political Ideologies: An Introduction to the Major Systems of Thought in the 21st Century. Jefferson, NC [u.a.]: McFarland. Gamson, W. 1992. Talking Politics. Cambridge. Cambridge University Press. Groves et al. 2011. Survey Methodology. Hoboken: John Wiley & Sons. http://public.eblib.com/EBLPublic/PublicView.do?ptiID=819140. Knobloch-Westerwick, S & Kleinman, S. 2011. Preelection Selective Exposure : Confirmation Bias Versus Informational Utility. Communication Research. 170-194. Sage Publications Kulinski, J & Quirk, P. 1998. Reconsidering the Rational Public: Cognition, Heuristics, and Mass Opinion. University of Illinois Russel, Just, and Crigler. 1992. Common Knowledge: News and the Construction of Political Meaning. Chicago. University of Chicago Press. Taber, C & Lodge, M. 2006. Motivated Skepticism in the Evaluation of Political Beliefs. American Journal of Political Science. 50. 755-759l

Torretti, A. 2012. Do Voters Only See What They Want to See?: The Relationship Between Political Ideology and Research Source Choice. California State University San Marcos.

Appendix A: In-Person Interview (# Represents Response Level of Support towards Claim) 1 = Strong Opposition, 4 = Neutral OR No Response, 7 = Strong Support
# Issue Claim A
Glaciers at lowest level in years (6) Middle-class incomes would increase by 12%. (4) Children of same-sex parents more stable than similar children from straight ones. (6)

Claim B
World temps down by 4% (1)

Response
General Agreement (A) Conspiratorial (B)

1 Climate Change 2 Romney Tax Plan 3 Same-Sex Marriage

Low-income taxes would increase No notable reaction to either by 18%. (5) claim States with legalized same-sex Anecdotal Support (A) marriage have higher divorce rates Doubt of Credibility (B) and more single mothers than states where such marriages are illegal. (2) Average effective tax-rate of No notable reaction to either middle-class taxpayers increased by claim 12% under Obama policies. (4)

4 Obama's Economic
Record

Mortgage-based debt has declined by 14% since the passage of the Obama stimulus plan. (4)

5 Obama's Economic
Record

Average effective tax-rate of middleMortgage-based debt has declined General Agreement (A) class taxpayers increased by 12% under by 14% since the passage of the General Doubt (B) Obama policies. (5) Obama stimulus plan. (3) Low-income taxes would increase by 16%. (5) Middle-class incomes would increase by 14% (2) General Agreement (A) Doubt of Credibility (B)

6 Romney Tax Plan 7 Obama's Economic


Record

Unemployment has dropped Real incomes of middle-class Conspiratorial (A) significantly over the past few months. families have dropped since 2008. Anecdotal Support (B) (1) (7) State Dept. emails show mixed information in the wake of the attack. (1) Average employment rate is higher in countries with high corporate and upper-income taxes than countries with lower ones. (6) World temps down by 4% (4) Leaked White House memos show Conspiratorial (A) administration knowledge of Agreement of Credibility (B) attacks. (7) Average middle-class incomes are General Agreement (A) lower in countries with high Doubt of Credibility (B) corporate and upper-income taxes than countries with lower ones. (2) Glaciers at lowest level in years (2) No Notable Reaction (A) General Doubt (B)

8 Benghazi Attack

9 General Tax Policy

10 Climate Change

11 General Tax Policy

Average middle-class incomes are lower Average employment rate is higher No notable reaction to either in countries with high corporate and in countries with high corporate and claim upper-income taxes than countries with upper-income taxes than countries lower ones. (4) with lower ones. (4) Average effective tax-rate of middleMortgage-based debt has declined General Doubt (A) class taxpayers increased by 12% under by 14% since the passage of the General Agreement (B) Obama policies. (3) Obama stimulus plan. (6) Leaked White House memos show State Dept. emails show mixed administration knowledge of attacks. (5) information in the wake of the attack.(3) Middle-class incomes would increase by 13% (4) Low-income taxes would increase by 16%. (2) General Agreement (A) Conspiratorial (B)

12 Obama's Economic
Record

13 Benghazi Attack

14 Romney Tax Plan

Low-income taxes would increase No notable reaction to either by 15%. (4) claim Middle-class incomes would increase by 14% (6) Doubt of Credibility (A) General Agreement (B)

15 Romney Tax Plan

16 General Tax Policy

Average employment rate is higher in countries with high corporate and upper-income taxes than countries with lower ones. (4)

Average middle-class incomes are No notable reaction to either lower in countries with high claim corporate and upper-income taxes than countries with lower ones. (4)

17 Obama's Economic
Record

Average effective tax-rate of middleMortgage-based debt has declined General Agreement (A) class taxpayers increased by 12% under by 14% since the passage of the Doubt of Credibility (B) Obama policies. (5) Obama stimulus plan. (2) Average middle-class incomes are lower Average employment rate is higher Anecdotal Support (A) in countries with high corporate and in countries with high corporate and General Doubt (B) upper-income taxes than countries with upper-income taxes than countries lower ones. (5) with lower ones. (3) Real incomes of middle-class families Unemployment has dropped have dropped since 2008 (7) significantly over the past few months. (1) Average employment rate is higher in countries with high corporate and upper-income taxes than countries with lower ones. (4) Anecdotal Support (A) Anecdotal Refutation (B)

18 General Tax Policy

19 Obama's Economic
Record

20 General Tax Policy

Average middle-class incomes are No notable reaction to either lower in countries with high claim corporate and upper-income taxes than countries with lower ones.(4)

21 General Tax Policy

Average middle-class incomes are lower Average employment rate is higher No notable reaction to either in countries with high corporate and in countries with high corporate and claim upper-income taxes than countries with upper-income taxes than countries lower ones. (4) with lower ones. (4) Glaciers at lowest level in years (7) World temps down by 4% (2) Agreement of Credibility (A) Anecdotal Refutation (B) General Support (A) Conspiratorial (B)

22 Climate Change

23 Benghazi Attack

Leaked White House memos show State Dept. emails show mixed administration knowledge of attacks. (7) information in the wake of the attack.(1) Unemployment has dropped significantly over the past few months (4).

24 Obama's Economic
Record

Real incomes of middle-class No significant response to A families have dropped since 2008. Doubt of Credibility (B) (3)

25 Obama's Economic
Record

Average effective tax-rate of middleMortgage-based debt has declined Anecdotal Support (A) class taxpayers increased by 12% under by 14% since the passage of the Anecdotal Refutation (B) Obama policies. (7) Obama stimulus plan. (2) Low-income taxes would increase by 16%. (5) Middle-class incomes would increase by 14% (3) General Agreement (A) Doubt of Credibility (B) Doubt of Credibility (A) General Agreement (B)

26 Romney Tax Plan

27 Benghazi Attack

Leaked White House memos show State Dept. emails show mixed administration knowledge of attacks. (1) information in the wake of the attack. (5)

Appendix B: Online Interview (# Represents Response Level of Support towards Claim) 1 = Strong Opposition, 4 = Neutral OR No Response, 7 = Strong Support
1 Benghazi Attack
2 Obama's Economic Record Obama's Economic Record Obama's Economic Record General Tax Policy State Dept. emails show mixed information in the wake of the attack. (1) Leaked White House memos show administration knowledge of attacks. (7) Conspiratorial (A) Agreement of Credibility (B)

Real incomes of middle-class families Unemployment has dropped Anecdotal Support (A) have dropped since 2008. (5) significantly over the past few months. Agreement of Credibility (B) (5) Average effective tax-rate of middleMortgage-based debt has declined by No notable reaction to either class taxpayers increased by 12% under 14% since the passage of the Obama claim Obama policies. (4) stimulus plan. (4) Unemployment has dropped Real incomes of middle-class Doubt of Credibility (A) significantly over the past few months. families have dropped since 2008. (5) General Agreement (B) (3) Average employment rate is higher in Average middle-class incomes are No notable reaction to either countries with high corporate and upper- lower in countries with high corporate claim income taxes than countries with lower and upper-income taxes than countries ones. (4) with lower ones. (4) Glaciers at lowest level in years. (4) World temps down by 4% (2) No significant response to A Doubt of Credibility (B)

6 7

Climate Change Same-Sex Marriage

Children of same-sex parents more States with legalized same-sex Anecdotal Refutation (A) stable than similar children from straight marriage have higher divorce rates and General Agreement (B) ones. (2) more single mothers than states where such marriages are illegal. (6) Average middle-class incomes are lower Average employment rate is higher in Anecdotal Support (B) in countries with high corporate and countries with high corporate and No significant response to B upper-income taxes than countries with upper-income taxes than countries with lower ones. (5) lower ones. (4) Average middle-class incomes are lower Average employment rate is higher in No notable reaction to either in countries with high corporate and countries with high corporate and claim upper-income taxes than countries with upper-income taxes than countries with lower ones. (4) lower ones. (4) Low-income taxes would increase by 16%. (3) Middle-class incomes would increase General Doubt (A) by 14% (3) General Doubt (B)

General Tax Policy

General Tax Policy

10 Romney Tax Plan 11 General Tax Policy

Average employment rate is higher in Average middle-class incomes are Anecdotal Support (A) countries with high corporate and upper- lower in countries with high corporate Doubt of Credibility (B) income taxes than countries with lower and upper-income taxes than countries ones. (6) with lower ones. (2) Glaciers at lowest level in years (5) Low-income taxes would increase by 16%. (4) Mortgage-based debt has declined by 14% since the passage of the Obama stimulus plan. (3) World temps down by 4% (1) General Agreement (A) Conspiratorial (B)

12 Climate Change 13 Romney Tax Plan 14 Obama's Economic Record 15 General Tax Policy

Middle-class incomes would increase No notable reaction to either by 14% (4) claim Average effective tax-rate of middleclass taxpayers increased by 12% under Obama policies. (5) Doubt of Credibility (A) General Agreement (B)

Average middle-class incomes are lower Average employment rate is higher in Anecdotal Support (A) in countries with high corporate and countries with high corporate and No notable reaction to B upper-income taxes than countries with upper-income taxes than countries with lower ones. (6) lower ones. (4) Children of same-sex parents more States with legalized same-sex General Agreement (A) stable than similar children from straight marriage have higher divorce rates and Doubt of Credibility (B) ones. (6) more single mothers than states where such marriages are illegal. (2) Low-income taxes would increase by Middle-class incomes would increase No notable reaction to either

16 Same-Sex Marriage

17 Romney Tax Plan

16%. (4) 18 Same-Sex Marriage

by 14% (4)

claim Conspiratorial (A) No notable reaction to B

States with legalized same-sex marriage Children of same-sex parents more have higher divorce rates and more stable than similar children from single mothers than states where such straight ones. (4) marriages are illegal. (1)