While the Democratic Party was successful in retaking the White House in the 2020 elections, it was unable to gain a majority in the US Senate. Ryan Williamson and Jamie Carson find that Senate elections have become largely nationalized: there was little variation on average between the electoral success of Democratic Senate candidates and that of Joe Biden in […]
Why did Democrats lose seats in the 2020 elections? More incumbents ran in more competitive districts.
Despite expectations that they would ride Joe Biden’s successful presidential election coattails to an increased majority in the US House of Representatives, the Democrats are likely to find themselves with a reduced majority heading into the 117th Congress. Ryan Williamson and Jamie Carson write that moderates likely lost their seats in this election because they were defending very competitive […]
Taking the redistricting process out of the hands of state legislatures can mean more competitive US House elections
In the United States, individual states control how US House districts are apportioned: in some the legislature creates these maps, while in others this is done by independent redistricting commissions. Ahead of the redistricting process which will follow the 2020 census, Ryan D. Williamson looks at how the methods used by states to redraw district lines effects electoral competitiveness. […]
Following this week’s midterm elections, in 2019 the Democratic Party will be in the majority in the US House of Representatives. Ryan Williamson and Jamie Carson have previously argued that more moderate Democratic candidates were more likely to win House seats. Analyzing the midterm results, they find that this year Democratic candidates who were more moderate were indeed able […]
Partisan polarization has steadily increased in recent decades, culminating in record highs in recent years. In new research, Jamie Carson and Ryan Williamson compare the ideology of winning and losing candidates in US House elections between 1992 and 2012. They find that winning candidates are much less ideologically extreme than those who lose elections. Though some districts prefer more […]
Michelle Nunn’s midterm result shows that Georgia’s demographics may be shifting to favor the Democrats.
In Georgia’s Senate race Republican David Purdue defeated Democrat Michelle Nunn by nearly eight points, despite polling that had shown a much closer contest. Jamie L. Carson, Joel Sievert, and Ryan D. Williamson reflect on Georgia’s midterm election results, writing that in gaining more than 40 percent of the vote, Nunn outperformed many previous Democratic candidates in the state. […]
In order to increase competition in U.S. House races, states should look to extra-legislative bodies to redraw congressional boundaries.
Politicians and pundits alike regularly bemoan the lack of electoral competition in congressional races as incumbent reelection rates frequently soar to over 90 percent. Redistricting and gerrymandering are often blamed as a way to lock members into their seats for at least a decade. Jamie L. Carson, Michael H. Crespin and Ryan D. Williamson ask if there are ways […]