Student Scholar Symposium Abstracts and Posters

Document Type


Publication Date

Spring 5-14-2015

Faculty Advisor(s)

Ann Gordon


How political campaigns are financed directly affects every citizen in the United States. This can be attributed to the fact that campaign money is correlated to the laws that pass through congress and the interests that are taken into consideration. Although the 2010 passage of Citizens United has increased the influence of corporate and wealthy interests, individual campaign donations represent a major percentage of funds raised and are heavily relied upon. The present study investigates what type of individual makes these political contributions based on household income, education level, age, gender, race, political party identification and trust in government. The study will build upon past research as well as compiling and analyzing data collection from the 2012 ANES time series election study to find the largest demographic of contributors and the motives behind the donations. I believe that the knowledge acquired from my findings will paint a clearer picture of who is directly affecting politics and the population as a whole. My research thus far has found that the majority of contributors are white males above the age of 55 with a post high school education. These individuals are also part of the middle and upper middle class, identify with the Democratic Party and have some skepticism of the integrity and honesty of the government in Washington.


Presented at the Spring 2015 Student Research Day at Chapman University.