COVID19-Korea(Political Consequence of COVID19 Policy Responses)

Published: 22 June 2021| Version 1 | DOI: 10.17632/852yp8n4ys.1
Brandon Beomseob Park


In this study, we examine how COVID-19 policy performance affects citizens’ political support in two distinct ways. First, we argue that citizens tend to make retrospective evaluations on incumbent COVID-19 policy performance using information obtained from similar crises in the past. Second, although the pandemic created a common exogenous shock across many governments, policy responses and performance varied substantially. This unique feature allows us to test how citizens form their political attitudes based on comparative assessments with other governments. We also examine the extent to which retrospective and relative comparative assessments are likely among sophisticated voters. Using original survey data from South Korea in April 2020, we find that positive evaluations of incumbent performance led to higher political sup- port. This paper is well situated in the existing literature as it shows that voters who learned from the past make rational decisions in a time of crisis and that voters who benchmark the performance of other countries make an informed decision regarding their political support. Finally, this paper shows that a COVID-19 effect on political attitude similar to that in Western democracies does exist on the opposite side of the globe.



Political Science