Presentation Title

Vice President in Crisis: Vice Presidential Favorability and COVID-19 Restrictions

Presenter Information

Jared KoelzerFollow

Advisor Information

Dr. Gregory Petrow

Location

MBSC Dodge Room 302A - G

Presentation Type

Oral Presentation

Start Date

4-3-2022 10:45 AM

End Date

4-3-2022 12:00 PM

Abstract

For months leading up to the 2020 election, polls from institutions such as Gallup and Quinnipiac asked respondents about presidential approval, the government’s response to COVID, and how they viewed President Trump’s handling of the pandemic. In many ways, polls and pundits alike were set on making the Coronavirus Pandemic the defining point of Donald Trump’s presidency. What these discussions ignored was an announcement from the Oval Office in February of 2020, naming Vice President Mike Pence as the head of the White House Coronavirus Task Force. This appointment was Pence’s opportunity to not only lead a crucial part of America’s response to COVID-19, but also to attempt to raise his own political profile above the scandal-ridden White House of the Trump Administration. But such an opportunity also had tremendous risks. By the time of the 2020 election, there were nearly 9.4 million COVID-19 cases in the United States, resulting in the death of over 230,000 Americans. Additionally, Pence had become embroiled in a fight over the election results and President Trump’s loss to former Vice President Joe Biden. My research explores the relationship between the COVID-19 response of the Trump Administration and Vice President Mike Pence’s own approval, and in doing so expands the limited research on how the actions of vice presidents affect their favorability. Using the American National Election Study, this research analyzes how the two factors relate to each other, and ponders the question of whether Vice Presidential approval even matters in modern politics.

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Mar 4th, 10:45 AM Mar 4th, 12:00 PM

Vice President in Crisis: Vice Presidential Favorability and COVID-19 Restrictions

MBSC Dodge Room 302A - G

For months leading up to the 2020 election, polls from institutions such as Gallup and Quinnipiac asked respondents about presidential approval, the government’s response to COVID, and how they viewed President Trump’s handling of the pandemic. In many ways, polls and pundits alike were set on making the Coronavirus Pandemic the defining point of Donald Trump’s presidency. What these discussions ignored was an announcement from the Oval Office in February of 2020, naming Vice President Mike Pence as the head of the White House Coronavirus Task Force. This appointment was Pence’s opportunity to not only lead a crucial part of America’s response to COVID-19, but also to attempt to raise his own political profile above the scandal-ridden White House of the Trump Administration. But such an opportunity also had tremendous risks. By the time of the 2020 election, there were nearly 9.4 million COVID-19 cases in the United States, resulting in the death of over 230,000 Americans. Additionally, Pence had become embroiled in a fight over the election results and President Trump’s loss to former Vice President Joe Biden. My research explores the relationship between the COVID-19 response of the Trump Administration and Vice President Mike Pence’s own approval, and in doing so expands the limited research on how the actions of vice presidents affect their favorability. Using the American National Election Study, this research analyzes how the two factors relate to each other, and ponders the question of whether Vice Presidential approval even matters in modern politics.