Sidelined or mainstreamed? Political participation and attitudes of people with disabilities in the United States

Lisa Schur, Meera Adya

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

52 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective: We examine whether people with disabilities are part of the political mainstream, or remain outsiders in important respects, by studying political participation and the underexplored topic of how disability relates to attitudes toward politics. Method: We analyze new disability measures on the 2008 and 2010 Current Population Surveys voting supplements, and two other nationally representative surveys for 2006 and 2007. Results: Citizens with disabilities remain less likely than nondisabled citizens to vote. While there are few differences in political preferences and party affiliations, people with disabilities tend to favor a greater government role in employment and healthcare, and give lower ratings on government responsiveness and trustworthiness. Conclusion: People with disabilities continue to be sidelined in important ways. Fully closing the disability gap would have led to 3.0 million more voters in 2008 and 3.2 million more voters in 2010, potentially affecting many races and subsequent public policies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)811-839
Number of pages29
JournalSocial Science Quarterly
Volume94
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2013

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Sciences(all)

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