2015 Archives

Terrorism changing look of 2016 race


The following is from the Dec. 17, 2015, edition of KTRH radio. SMU Political Science Professor Cal Jillson provided expertise for this story.

December 23, 2015

By Cliff Saunders

After the terrorist attacks in San Bernardino two weeks ago, and Paris in November, the 2016 Presidential race looks a lot different than it used to.

Forty percent of Americans told an NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll that national security and terror is their top priority. That's up 19 points from April. SMU political scientist Cal Jillson told KTRH this represents a big shift.

“Normally it’s economic issues,” Jillson stated.

And who does that benefit?

“Republicans like to run on strength,” Jillson explained. On economic issues Democrats are generally advantaged. On foreign policy Republicans are.”

Jillson says it's simple, that right now many of you are scared.

“What happened in Paris and San Bernardino brought those security issues back to the fore, but we don’t know if there will be a series of attacks that keeps it at the fore,” Jillson told KTRH News.

And if history is any guide, and attitudes shift, it can change the outcome of an election.

“George H.W. Bush had a very high rating because of what he did in Gulf War I. The economy tipped down and he lost the race,” Jillson said.

Read the full story.