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Management & Technology

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The research explored the role of political leadership in response to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). The researchers conducted a political discourse analysis on 239 transcripts from the press briefings of President Trump and seven U. S. governors to determine the extent to which the research subjects used effective crisis leadership and communication. These results suggest that President Trump and Governors DeSantis, DeWine, Ducey, and Ivey are particularly vulnerable to political fallout for their handling of COVID-19 because stakeholders might view them as inattentive to the crisis and ineffective in their policy responses. Governors Cuomo, Newsom, and Whitmer may be in a better position to avoid fallout due to their information-seeking, hands-on approaches, which some will deem as competent and appropriate to the threat (although others may see their efforts as overcontrolling). The research demonstrated how discourse analysis could predict political behaviors and blame assignment for crisis responses.

Publication Title

Cogent Social Sciences



Taylor & Francis, Inc.

Required Publisher’s Statement

Watkins, D. V., & Clevenger, A. D. (2021). US political leadership and crisis communication curing COVID-19. Cogent Social Sciences. 7(1), 1-33.