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"I support your endorsement": A classification of presidential campaign endorsements and the exploration of the 2016 Republican "support" Versus "Endorse" dichotomy
Doherty, Allison V.
Goehring, Charles E.Goggin, Stephen
Endorsements play a large role in political campaigns, often signaling to potential voters of a candidate’s political ideologies and policy, and mobilizing voters on election day. This thesis offers a generic description of presidential campaign endorsement as its own unique rhetorical genre. Through the examination of 30 endorsement texts, this thesis outlines seven characteristics comprising this unique genre of speech. Additionally, it examines three of Donald Trump’s endorsements during his 2016 primary race. The endorsement speeches by Governor Sarah Palin, Governor Chris Christie, and Dr. Ben Carson expose generic violations, and offer insight into Donald Trump’s candidacy through their violation of traditional political norms. Through the classification of this unique rhetorical genre, this thesis brings awareness to some Republican Party members’ strategic refusal to utter the word “endorse” yet still “support” the candidate during the 2016 presidential election.
Professional Studies and Fine Arts
Master of Arts (M.A.) San Diego State University, 2017
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