Teenie Matlock and Caitlin Fausey asked students to read two sentences about hypothetical politicians. Ninety-eight students read, “Last year, Mark was having an affair with his assistant and was taking hush money from a prominent constituent.” Let’s call this sentence A. Ninety-four other students read, “Last year, Mark had an affair with his assistant and took hush money from a prominent constituent.” We will call this sentence B.
(a) What are the speciﬁc differences in the way the two sentences are phrased?
(b) In the study, 71 of the 98 students who read sentence A and 49 of the 98 students who read sentence B felt the politician would not be re-elected. Do these results suggest that the sentence structure makes a difference in deciding whether the politician would be re-elected?
(c) Research “imperfect aspect” and “perfect aspect.” Does this help explain any differences in the results of the survey?