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Mobilization by different means: Nativity and GOTV in the United States

  • Author(s): Michelson, MR
  • García Bedolla, L
  • et al.
Abstract

© 2014 by the Center for Migration Studies of New York. All rights reserved. We compare the impact of 15 randomized get-out-the-vote (GOTV) field experiments on naturalized and U.S.-born voters. We find that mobilization increased turnout among U.S.-born Latinos, but had no measurable effect among Latino naturalized citizens. In contrast, GOTV increased turnout among naturalized Asian Americans but had no measureable effect among U.S.-born Asian Americans. Race politics scholars have long argued that the terms we use to describe ethnoracial groups mask significant internal heterogeneity. We show how this heterogeneity affects voter mobilization, demonstrating the importance of seeing nativity and national origin as critical lines of demarcation that affect how certain individuals are mobilized to participate in politics.

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