The emphasis on culture wars in the 1988 elections contributed to the rise of polarization because it made crime a racial factor.
How did the 1988 elections lead to polarization?
George Bush Snr. broadcast ads of Willie Horton who was a convicted killer and basically scared people into voting for him with promises of being tough on crime.
This polarized the nation as many people associated violent crime with African Americans.
Find out more on the Willie Horton ads at https://brainacademy.pro/question/26990695.