A microanalysis of amateurism among Republican activities in Texas

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1979

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Abstract

Wilson's model of the "amateur politician" was utilized to examine the attitudes and behavior of Republican activists in Texas. The responses of 283 Republican State Convention delegates sampled through a 125 item written questionnaire were analyzed to test fifteen substantive hypotheses asserting relationships between amateurism and its correlates: (1) socioeconomic factors, (2) socialization factors, (3) ideological and issue disposition, (4) party recruitment and incentive structures, and (5) party involvement. Only three substantive hypotheses were supported at the .05 significance level: a hypothesis relating amateurism with self-characterized ideological disposition; a hypothesis relating amateurism with longevity of party activism; and a hypothesis relating amateurism with desire to enter politics full time. The representativeness of the sample relative to the geographic distribution of delegates in the population was measured to be r = 0.98. The reliability and validity of the research instrument were verified as statistically significant at the p<.05 significance level. The results of the research support the broad conclusion that the amateur model appears inoperative among Texas Republican activists.

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