CUREJ - College Undergraduate Research Electronic Journal

Social Media and the 2018 Midterms: An Analysis of House Candidates' Twitter Posts

Jacob R. Ausubel, University of Pennsylvania

Division: Social Sciences

Dept/Program: Political Science

Document Type: Undergraduate Student Research

Mentor(s): John Lapinski

Date of this Version: 26 March 2019



To date, relatively few academic studies have analyzed congressional candidates’ use of social media in the 2018 U.S. midterm elections. This paper contributes to the literature by conducting a textual analysis of 697 House candidates’ Twitter posts from between January 1st and November 6th 2018. The study focuses on seven key issues – the economy, gun policy, healthcare, immigration, Russia, the Supreme Court, and the Trump presidency – and assesses whether there was a fundamental difference in how Democratic and Republican candidates approached each one. The paper argues that there were partisan differences in social media use and presents two potential explanations: political polarization and how each political party was confronted with unique challenges.


Political Science

Suggested Citation

Ausubel, Jacob R., "Social Media and the 2018 Midterms: An Analysis of House Candidates' Twitter Posts" 26 March 2019. CUREJ: College Undergraduate Research Electronic Journal, University of Pennsylvania,

Date Posted: 17 May 2019




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