Monday, July 05, 2010

The Politics of Fandom

A new study indicates that the success of local college sports teams in the weeks preceding an election has a measurable effect on the electoral prospects of incumbents. Basically, when the local team wins, voters are happier, and thus are more inclined to look favorably on entities representing the status quo. (Sorry, but voters are that stupid).

This does raise some interesting rooting conundrums, though. After all, sometimes teams from two competitive districts will be competing against each other. Suppose Ole Miss (Travis Childers) plays the University of Virginia (Tom Perriello). Who do you root for? Who is more football crazy (or at least more likely to be influenced by the outcome of a football game) -- the Rebels or the Wahoos (Ole Miss)? Which incumbent would be more of a loss (Perriello)? Should the DNC dispatch operatives to critical games to give the "right" team a critical boost? Lots of tough calls here.

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