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American Politics | Leadership Studies | Models and Methods | Other Psychology | Personality and Social Contexts


This article argues that conventional presidential election-outcome forecasting models based on situational and structural economic and political variables can be refined by acknowledging the pivotal role of personality in contemporary presidential campaigns and incorporating candidate personality variables as publicly perceived into predictive models.

Using the 2000 U.S. presidential election as a case study, it is contended that George W. Bush’s “dispositional advantage” effectively neutralized Al Gore’s “situational advantage” with respect to electability.


The research was conducted at the Unit for the Study of Personality in Politics (USPP), a collaborative faculty–student research program in the psychology of politics at St. John’s University and the College of St. Benedict in Collegeville and St. Joseph, Minnesota, directed by Aubrey Immelman, Ph.D., associate professor of psychology, who specializes in the psychological assessment of presidential candidates and world leaders.

More information on 2000 presidential nominees

George W. Bush »

Al Gore »

Related report

Predicting the outcome of the 2000 presidential election » Why Al Gore will not be elected president in 2000 (Clio’s Psyche, vol. 6, no. 2, Sept. 1999, pp. 73–75)