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On the Decline of Competition in Congressional Elections

Ferejohn, John A. (1976) On the Decline of Competition in Congressional Elections. Social Science Working Paper, 81. California Institute of Technology , Pasadena, CA. (Unpublished)

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Several authors have observed a decline in the number of competitive congressional districts during the past two decades. Various explanations have been proposed for this change. Among these are theories attributing major causal significance to changing methods of drawing district boundaries, and increasing control of campaign resources by incumbents. These theories are examined critically and arguments are advanced for their rejection. The principal cause of the decline of competition for congressional seats appears to rest on a change in individual voting behavior.

Item Type:Report or Paper (Working Paper)
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Additional Information:Revised. This paper has benefited greatly from the assistance of John Land, my research assistant, and from the detailed critical comments of Morris Fiorina, Sam Kernell, Robert Erikson, John Kingdon, Ben Page, Gary Jacobson, Michael Cohen, J. Vincent Buck, Robert Bates, and Lance Davis. I could not take all their criticisms into account, but I am deeply grateful for their generous donations of time. Some of the data employed in this study were made available by the Interuniversity Consortium for Political Research at the University of Michigan. I alone am responsible for the analysis and conclusions. Published as Ferejohn, John A. "On the decline of competition in congressional elections." American Political Science Review 71.1 (1977): 166-176.
Group:Social Science Working Papers
Subject Keywords:Incumbents, Political candidates, Voting, Political parties, Congressional elections, Voting behavior, Redistricting, Identifiers, Party identification
Series Name:Social Science Working Paper
Issue or Number:81
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20171030-162109493
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Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:82799
Deposited By: Jacquelyn Bussone
Deposited On:31 Oct 2017 16:09
Last Modified:03 Oct 2019 18:58

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