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The House is not a home: British MPs in the constituencies

Cain, Bruce E. and Ferejohn, John A. and Fiorina, Morris P. (1979) The House is not a home: British MPs in the constituencies. Legislative Studies Quarterly, 4 (4). pp. 501-523. ISSN 0362-9805.

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The British parliamentary system supposedly denies MPs the electoral incentive and the staff resources to engage in constituency service in the style of members of the U.S. Congress. Backbench MPs presumably aspire to ministerial office and therefore concentrate their activity on the work of the House. Case studies of 17 MPs, however, reveal that the constituency orientations of MPs are more varied than the conventional wisdom suggests, that some resemble the Homestyle of U.S. representatives, and that nearly all believe that attention to their constituents can protect them against national electoral swings. A close examination of the constituency orientations of five MPs suggests the cross-national utility of Fenno's distinction between geographical, re-election, primary, and personal constituencies and his categories of "presentation of self."

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Additional Information:© 1979 by the Comparative Legislative Research Center. Research for this project has been supported by the National Science Foundation, grant No. SOC 78-15413. The authors wish to thank Gillian Peele of Oxford University and Graham Wilson of the University of Essex for their comments. An earlier version of this article was presented at the annual meeting of the Midwest Political Science Association, Chicago, Illinois, April 19-21, 1979. Formerly SSWP 265.
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Subject Keywords:Constituents, Political parties, Housing, Legislators, Meetings, Working class, Congressional districts, Voting, Communities, Conservatism
Issue or Number:4
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20171120-155042836
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Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:83367
Deposited By: Jacquelyn Bussone
Deposited On:21 Nov 2017 00:02
Last Modified:03 Oct 2019 19:05

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