Honors College Theses

Date

2021

Major

Political Science (B.A.)

Document Type and Release Option

Thesis (open access)

Faculty Mentor

Dr. Patrick Novotny

Abstract

In 2018, Georgia saw one of the most contested elections in recent memory with Brian Kemp narrowly defeating Stacey Abrams. As a part of that election, social media would play a critical role in how campaigns are run. This thesis takes a look at previous literature on voter turnout and social media. This thesis asks: How did the campaigns use social media to spread their message, and in what stage of the election was social media most effective? To answer that question this thesis features a content analysis of Facebook posts and Tweets from the 2018 elections compared to posts in the 2014 elections to answer my question and to see how campaigning on social media has evolved since 2014. The results are that campaigns are more likely to post from the campaign trail and Get Out the Vote messages and during the final days of the general election campaign.

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