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Day 2 - The Representative-Constituency Linkage (U.S. Congress)

Day 2 - The Representative-Constituency Linkage (U.S. Congress)



Please contact me at lee.hannah@psu.edu for original files.

Please contact me at lee.hannah@psu.edu for original files.



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    Day 2 - The Representative-Constituency Linkage (U.S. Congress) Day 2 - The Representative-Constituency Linkage (U.S. Congress) Presentation Transcript

    • Day 2 – The Representative-Constituency Linkage June 27, 2013
    • In the News  Supreme Court Rulings on VRA, DOMA, and Prop. 8 and how they affect Congress  Accompanying Supreme Court Rulings is the “Running of the Interns”  http://www.buzzfeed.com/bennyjohnson/the-2013-running-of- the-interns
    • Gay Marriage Rulings  What is DOMA?  http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/104/hr3396  Changes in gay marriage legislation over time.  http://graphics.latimes.com/usmap-gay-marriage-chronology/  The decision yesterday.  http://www.nbcnews.com/id/3036789/#52326724  Implications for Congress?  Comprehensive Immigration Reform (CIR)  http://www.politico.com/story/2013/06/gay-marriage-ruling- immigration-bill-93420.html  Why have Republicans quickly changed positions on immigration?  http://www.pewhispanic.org/2012/11/07/latino-voters-in-the-2012-election/
    • The Two Congresses (DOL 3-13)  Congress as a collegial body, performing constitutional duties, and debating legislative issues that affect the entire nation.  Complex network of rules, organizations, and traditions.  Congress as a representative assembly of 541 individuals.
    • Two Constituencies  Constituents at home  Colleagues in Congress  *MCs constantly deal with tension between lawmaking and representing.  Sometimes this means breaking from party and politicians to appease one’s constituency.  Example: Joe Manchin – Democratic Senator from West Virginia  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xIJORBRpOPM  Or breaking away from the national party  The popularity of Washington Republicans vs. state Republicans.  http://www.nbcnews.com/id/3036789/#52304879 (1:30)
    • Edmund Burke’s Perspective  “Your representative owes you, not his industry only, but his judgment; and he betrays, instead of serving you, if he sacrifices it to your opinion.”  5 minutes on a scratch sheet of paper.  Do you agree or disagree with Burke’s argument? Is it too simplistic? Is he right in some contexts and not in others?
    • Citizen Perceptions  As an institution, Congress is judged mainly on the basis of citizens’ overall attitudes toward politics.  Citizens view their own legislators are largely agents of local concerns.
    • Source: http://www.npr.o rg/2010/12/17/1 32141805/why- we-love-to-hate- congress Source: http://teachingwit hdata.blogspot.co m/2010_11_01_a rchive.html
    • Constituency Influence In Congress (Miller and Stokes 1963)  Key research question: How much influence do constituents have on their Congressmen’s behavior?  In particular, do legislators respond similarly in each situation or do they respond differently on different issues?  What dimensions do they examine?
    • Three Models of Representation  Constituency Control  Legislator votes according to wishes of constituents  Responsible Parties Hypothesis  Legislator votes in line with national party  Trustee model  Legislator votes according to their own judgment.
    • Questions for Reading  What specific policies do they examine?  What method do they use to gather data? (p.46)  How do they describe electoral behavior? How do they characterize voters? (p.53)  What do they find, in particular, do they find support for constituency influence, responsible parties, or the trustee model? Does this vary by policy issue?
    • Model From Miller and Stokes (1963) p.50 The constituency can influence the decisions of the representative in two ways: 1) The legislator, is so similar to his constituents’ that in following his own convictions he does his constituent’s will. 2) Legislator follows her perceptions of district attitude in order to win re-election.
    • Measurement  Congressmen ranked according to:  Roll Call Votes  Information revealed in confidential surveys  Candidates ranked according to:  Information revealed in confidential surveys  Constituents:  Average of attitude scores of all constituents living in the same districts  Measure of the dominant electoral elements in the district
    • Results  From these measures, they can derive an empirical measure of the extent of policy agreement between legislator and district. From Miller and Stokes (1963) p.49
    • Initial findings  Social and economic welfare – 0.3 agreement, MCs are, on average, more or less “liberal” than their districts.  No agreement on foreign policy.  And the strongest agreement on civil rights – 0.6
    • From Miller and Stokes (1963) p.52
    • From Miller and Stokes (1963) p.52 Roll call votes on VRA confirm the delegate model (largely based on region) http://www.govtrack.us/congress/votes/89-1965/h87