The Marginal Significance of NY-26

May 25, 2011
Much has been made of Kathy Hochul’s victory in New York’s 26th congressional district–a district that has elected a Republican since 1970.  Most observers have cited her victory as a… Read More

Where’s the Realignment?

May 24, 2011
It dawned on me today just how much America has gone through over the last decade. A major terrorist attack, systemic economic failure, credit freezes, massive failures in disaster response,… Read More

“Cognitive Madisonians” and Congressional Approval

May 12, 2011
Declining approval of Congress is a popular topic these days (note: low Congressional approval is always popular, just more so recently).  The importance of this issue was aptly described in 1974… Read More

Obama’s Birth Certificate: Diminishing Marginal Utility and Finite Agenda Space

April 27, 2011
I posted this on Seth Masket’s facebook page a moment ago (see his blog here).  Seth asked why Obama released his birth certificate now when there is presumably an electoral incentive to… Read More

America Still hates Congress…but not always.

April 25, 2011
Jonathan Bernstein and Ezra Klein have a couple posts on Congress’s terrible approval ratings. Both make good points. Klein points out: …the issue isn’t individuals so much as… Read More

Analyzing the Survival of Party Chairmen: “It’s Not You, It’s Us”

February 4, 2011
As you know, Michael Steele was deposed as chairman of the RNC a few short weeks ago in favor of the whimsically-named Reince Priebus.  In addition to his numerous public… Read More

“The Lens of Deep Suspicion.” Why Americans disapprove of Congress.

December 15, 2010
Most Americans disapprove of Congress and have for a long time. However, today Congress matched its historic best in disappointing US citizens. Gallup released a poll today showing that… Read More

Proposition 19: A “Moment of Clarity?”

October 28, 2010
Josh and I thought we would collaborate for a post on one of this election’s direct democracy initiatives in California, Proposition 19. He and I, along with Dan Smith,… Read More

Financial Independence and Roll-Call Behavior

September 23, 2010
Yesterday, The Monkey Cage posted this article exploring the relationship between lawmakers’ personal wealth and their preference regarding the estate tax.  Based on their analysis of the 109th… Read More

Grading Presidential Rhetoric using Readability Software

September 15, 2010
If you were a junior high or high school teacher interested in assigning presidential speeches for your American Government class, which presidential speeches would you assign and to whom?  My… Read More