Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name


Degree Program

Political Science


Political Science

Major Professor

Jacobsmeier, Matthew; Huelshoff, Michael

Second Advisor

Day, Christine


In this paper I explore the causal relationship between the strategic economic interdependence advanced by Western democracies after WWII and the "puzzle of participation" in US presidential elections. More specifically, I seek to illustrate first how economic convergence within the West and then the transition from Keynesian to monetarist policy rhetoric reflexively diminish the degree to which US working class voters can realistically petition their elected officials regarding the most salient matters of economic self-interest. My results indicate that from 1948-2004, the working public became more isolated from their most salient economic decisions, voted less often due to heretofore unexplored macroeconomic indicators.


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