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The Real Answer Is You Can't Tell

Reader comment on item: Is Western Europe Turning to the Right?

Submitted by David Ryan (United States), Jul 19, 2021 at 14:25

Lying to pollsters on issues of religious and ethnic views and candidates while voting more conservatively (or "White") is called in the US the Bradley (or sometimes Wilder or Dinkins) effect, after Black Los Angeles mayor Tom Bradley underperformed favorable polls in losing the 1982 election for California governor, and Black candidates Douglas Wilder and David Dinkins very narrowly won elections for Virginia governor and New York City mayor, respectively, in 1989 after polling with wide leads. People either want to feel they are more tolerant or they want pollsters to think they are tolerant, even when the situation they perceive is intolerable.

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