By virtue of the natural diversity and size of the country, the idea that U.S. politics is inevitably polarized goes back to diverging philosophies of the Founding Fathers.
However, despite historic predispositions toward some amount of polarization, the past few decades have shown historically significant deviation from what is considered normal, with parties unable to reach consensus on basic functions of government, and citizenry at partisan loggerheads over social and economics issues facing the country (Jensen, Naidu, Kaplan, Wilse-Samson, Gergen, Zuckerman, and Spirling, 2012). Though many authors differ on the causes and strength of political polarization and its importance in the modern society of today, numerous scholars have documented the rise of the conflict in the United States. Citing subtle increase in the measured polarization of the voting population matched to the congressional ideological divide, Fiorina et al.
(2005) believe that the polarization in Congress has not diffused much into the citizenry while Jensen et al. (2012) argue that political discourse is driven and generated by private citizens instead of being confined to legislatures alone. Many agree that fervent and toxic political vitriol makes it nearly impossible to constructively deal with the rising partisan polarization in the United States.Moreover, as frequently noted by the media, strong and often affect-laden language has become more apparent in lieu of despised-by-many political correctness, culminating in the 2016 Trump election. Higher and harsher level of rhetoric _ The question posed in literature, as well as among citizens and the media, is whether _. Using original public poll data obtained through phone and online surveys, in this study we aim to measure levels of political polarization in the 2016 Swing State by investigating verbal intensity of North Carolinians’ after the Presidential Election.
We also examine the influence of phone vs. online survey mode to determine if verbal intensity is affected solely by partisanship and ideology or by some other factors.