The following commentary originally appeared in Fox News Politics on FoxNews.com, the website of the Fox News Channel:
Just before the second presidential debate in October, Professor Maria Guadalupe began to wonder what would happen if the brash, aggressive mannerisms of Donald Trump were emulated by a woman.
Turns out the hypothetical candidate was a hit.
In a bias-challenging twist, Guadalupe and another professor recently engineered a gender-swap exercise featuring a mock debate between a female version of Trump and a male version of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Despite some assumptions that the Trump-ish female would not fare well, audiences actually responded more positively to her.
“People were really able to see the techniques that Trump was using,” said NYU Steinhardt clinical associate professor Joe Salvatore, who helmed the project with Guadalupe. “The repetition of a certain idea. The simplicity of a message.
“One audience member described the Trump message as she was able to hear it as hummable lyrics, while Clinton may have had well-researched information, but there was no hook.”
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