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February 01, 2021

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Fascinating. The thought I had was that those variables were likely to be correlated with the baseline (2016 vote share, yeah)? Maybe 2sls covid-19 deaths, BLM, etc. on baseline vote share. All else equal the absolute change in vote share could be smaller in counties that had very high D or R share in 2016?

Thanks for the encouragement. Endogeneity is the bain of our social science existence, for sure! Your instrument is a good idea! Now, we think we have --at least-- two endogenous regressors: Covid mortality and BLM protests. So we can only play with one variable at a time. And we did! Bad first stage for Covid, good first stage for BLM. What to do? And do you have in mind the mechanisms/rationale? Exclusion restriction holds? Enquiring minds want to know!

Welp, exclusion restrictions probably don't hold, so maybe not the best instrument after all. So maybe use relative change, rather than absolute for the dependent variable?
I also wonder how the fact that you have not a sample, but a population (unless I'm wrong: do you have all the counties?), should affect your interpretation of significance.

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