Feb 27 2020

DPA Research and Policy Seminar Series: Amanda Bryan, Loyola

February 27, 2020

12:00 PM - 1:00 PM


Lower Level, Conference room 1, CUPPA Hall


412 S Peoria Street, Chicago, IL 60607

DPA Research and Policy Seminar Series: Amanda Bryan, Loyola

Kavanaugh's Rage and Twitter's Reaction: Analyzing Public Sentiment During a Supreme Court Confirmation

Confirmation hearings are a unique opportunity for the Court to shore up its legitimacy by reinforcing the legitimizing symbols of the Court (Gibson and Caldeira 2009). However, there is much less evidence to shore up that these legitimizing symbols are actually what people pay attention to and take away from confirmation hearings. We know that hearings impact the legitimacy of the Court but that’s not the same thing as connecting the content of the hearings to people’s views on the Court, the nominee, and the confirmation process. With the advent of Twitter where we have the ability, in real-time, to ascertain how people are responding to the confirmation hearings. What they are talking to, which symbols they perceive, and how they respond to the process. In this project we analyze the tweets made by people at several stages of Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation process – from Justice Kennedy’s confirmation process through the final vote on confirmation -- to analyze if these symbols are getting through to this unique group of political observers who not only follow the confirmation process but also talk about it.



Michael Siciliano

Date posted

Jan 14, 2020

Date updated

Feb 19, 2020