Scholars have examined how specific opinion climates affect political discourse, but little attention has been given to how perceived freedom to talk in general is related to congenial political conversation in ordinary spaces or willingness to argue with an opponent - or how each mode of talk affects civic participation. Respondents in a nationwide survey felt free to talk about politics. Freedom to talk, issue-specific news, and newspaper use were most strongly related to ordinary political conversation. With argumentation, issue-specific news, issue-specific talk, and local opinion climate dominated. Ordinary political conversation was significantly related to conventional participation; argumentation was not.
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