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The Path to Gay RightsHow Activism and Coming Out Changed Public Opinion$
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Jeremiah J. Garretson

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9781479822133

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9781479822133.001.0001

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Issue Evolution?

Issue Evolution?

Gay Politics in the Early Clinton Years

Chapter:
(p.125) 5 Issue Evolution?
Source:
The Path to Gay Rights
Author(s):

Jeremiah J. Garretson

Publisher:
NYU Press
DOI:10.18574/nyu/9781479822133.003.0005

Chapter 5 begins the book’s examination of mass opinion change by first looking at the effects of Clinton’s endorsement of gay rights in 1992 and the 1993 gays-in-the-military debate. Using the American National Election Study, a small movement of Democrats in the public appear to have shifted more liberal on gay rights in 1992, but the magnitude of the effect was small. Likewise, the 1993 gays-in-the-military debate only resulted in polarization along political lines, not liberalization. However, declining fear of AIDS in the mid-1990s appear to have caused some attitude change. This leads to the conclusion that media coverage of gay rights in 1992 and 1993 only moved public opinion in a relatively minor fashion.

Keywords:   1992 election, Gays-in-the-Military, DADT, elections, issue evolution, disgust, AIDS, David Mixner

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