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Deficits, Democrats, and Distributive Benefits: Congressional Elections and the Pork Barrel in the 1980s

Alvarez, R. Michael and Saving, Jason L. (1997) Deficits, Democrats, and Distributive Benefits: Congressional Elections and the Pork Barrel in the 1980s. Political Research Quarterly, 50 (4). pp. 809-831. ISSN 1065-9129. https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20170821-145739714

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Abstract

In this study, we examine the extent to which legislators receive elec toral benefits from altering the geographic distribution of federal outlays. Although there are both theoretical and anecdotal reasons to believe in the existence of such benefits, previous empirical work has largely failed to verify the connection between pork barreling and reelection. We ex amine House incumbents during the 1980s, when budget deficits were allegedly forcing legislators to end the acquisition of distributive benefits, and we discover that legislators did in fact reap electoral benefits from pork barreling in the 1980s. We further discover that there is a sharp partisan difference in the marginal effects of federal outlays: additional federal monies strongly affect Democratic reelection margins but barely impact the electoral fortunes of Republicans. This conclusion has impor tant implications for current debates about Congress, divided govern ment, and the recent Republican takeover of Congress.


Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
https://doi.org/10.1177/106591299705000405DOIArticle
http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.1177/106591299705000405PublisherArticle
http://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20170818-132928764Related ItemWorking Paper
Additional Information:© 1997 Sage Publications. First Published December 1, 1997.
Issue or Number:4
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20170821-145739714
Persistent URL:https://resolver.caltech.edu/CaltechAUTHORS:20170821-145739714
Official Citation:Deficits, Democrats, and Distributive Benefits: Congressional Elections and the Pork Barrel in the 1980s R. Michael AlvarezJason L. Saving Political Research Quarterly Vol 50, Issue 4, pp. 809 - 831 First published date: July-02-2016 10.1177/106591299705000405
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:80651
Collection:CaltechAUTHORS
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:21 Aug 2017 22:07
Last Modified:03 Oct 2019 18:33

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