An intro to Twitter for lawyers on the fence about trying it I started using Twitter the day the CA3blog site crashed.
Overview[ edit ] In the Congressional Electionsout of the Congressional districts in which there were elections, were listed as "safe" by Congressional Quarterly. The results a week later confirmed that very few House races were competitive.
One of the most important reasons as to why incumbents are nearly unbeatable is because they normally have much better financed campaigns than their opponents. Other potential theories include the aggressive redrawing of congressional boundaries known as gerrymanderingfrom a more historical perspective the loss of party alignment, or the simple fact of being an incumbent.
Senate and in the House, have been championing the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act as a tool to combat the growing stagnation of Congress, claiming that it would revitalize elections.
As mentioned, it was more than 30 years ago when David Mayhew first commented on vanishing marginals, the decreasing number of congressional districts that were being won by close vote margins.
From tothe number of marginal districts dropped to about Turnover is not essential for competition, but one would expect serious competition to result in a substantial amount of turnover.
While some elections have produced a great deal of turnover, other elections have produced next to none. In general, the amount of turnover declined in the second half of the 20th century, especially in the last few decades.
Competitiveness, at least measured by the likelihood of an election changing the partisan outcome in a district, is now less than half it was throughout much of the 20th century. It might be expected that a large number of citizens would come to regard the process as unresponsive and crooked, grow cynical, and stay home on election day.
This is seen as one of the many potential reasons as to why the United States has one of the lowest voter turnout rates in the western world. So re-election rates greater than fifty percent are not surprising. This effect can explain the re-election rates in the US Senate from tobut has difficulty explaining the increase in the re-election rates from to In the s the typical incumbent in a contested election had somewhere between 83 and 93 percent of what was spent by all the candidates in the district, and these incumbents typically captured about 64 to 67 percent of the vote.
If anything, this analysis may even understate how great the incumbency campaign finance advantage predetermines the election outcome, as the analysis examines only contested elections. For instance, in the election cycle, 64 incumbents ran for reelection unchallenged because the opposition party did not even mount a nominal challenge.
These elections resulted in victories for the incumbents, and one loss. Nevertheless, this financing advantage of They might do this for future special considerations from the politician, or just to be on the winning team.
This person, then, would never give money to a sure loser, and this way a candidate with small lead in the polls can quickly develop an insurmountable lead in campaign spending.
Gerrymandering in the United States Gerrymandering is a widely used, and often legal, tactic in the United States. However, there is little evidence that redistricting has had any substantial effect on increased congressional stagnation in the United States.
Being an incumbent lends both greater name recognition and attracts votes that would not be gained by a challenger or running in an open seat race. Various estimates have been made to sift through the, data and discern how many votes incumbency itself is worth, and although various methodologies have yielded varied results it has been estimated that prior to the mids incumbency added only a few percentage points to the incumbents' column.
Estimates have indicated that it has increased to roughly 7 to 10 percentage points of the vote, depending on the methodology used. Districts have been made safer for incumbents and this has buffered these districts from the tides of national politics.
Pork barrel "Pork barrel spending" is a term in American politics used to refer to congressmen or senators who use their position on Committees in the Senate or House to appropriate federal money to their own district or state, and therefore bring increased business and investment to their home area.
This process is referred to as "bringing home the pork. Political commentator Michael J. Malbin has commented that Congress suffers from an "I'll support your pork if you support mine" syndrome  and that it would be difficult to eliminate pork without fundamentally changing the way in which Congress appropriates funds.
Some politicians take a hard-line stance against pork  and have worked to eliminate pork from Congress. Proposed solutions to the increased incumbency advantage[ edit ] Congressional term limits[ edit ] See also: This act was defeated in the House by a margin: Since the failure of the Citizen Legislature Act to be passed, there has been no new legislation proposed advocating the imposing of term limits.
Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act Prior to BCRA, the last major piece of campaign finance legislation was the Federal Election Campaign Actwhich had been ratified in and amended several times, most recently in From one standpoint it can be argued that the situation had already hit rock bottom in terms of stagnation, and that any reform would improve the current situation.
However, there is an equally strong argument that BCRA will do very little to affect the congressional deadlock. BCRA was more tailored to combat the seemingly irresistible rise of political soft moneywhereas the structural problems in congressional stagnation lie elsewhere.
The problems of an enlarged incumbency advantage are the results of a severe imbalance in hard money contributions to the candidates and is not a consequence of a sizable influx of soft money, or third-party issue advocacy.
Given the huge advantages that incumbents have, some might say that political tools like soft money and issue advocacy would benefit the underdog challenger, as it could be potentially helpful to them, and could lessen the competition.
It follows that any impediment to these alternative sources might prove to work contrary to the revitalization of the political process. Congressional Apportionment Amendment Another possible solution would be the ratification of the original first amendment proposed to the U.The Issue.
The United States and its allies increasingly face challenges from state actors seeking to erode and undermine a system that has expanded peace and prosperity for 70 years. The past practice had been to give a free pass to an adult who is part of a family unit.
The new Trump policy is to prosecute all adults. The idea is to send a signal that we are serious about our.
Corruption. It is an overloaded word often used as the sole cause of the problems in poor countries. Yet, corruption seems to be everywhere, indeed often encouraged by rich countries and their corporations, especially when it comes to natural resources, and arms trade.
This is the first ever such corruption ranking of the states that we know of. In in Chicago, the Better Government Association (BGA) released The BGA Integrity Index is an in-depth analysis of five laws that play a The Justice Department could go a long way to help combat public corruption in the United States if it not only.
Prevalence. The Global Slavery Index estimates that on any given day in there were , people living in conditions of modern slavery in the United States, a prevalence of victims of modern slavery for every thousand in the country.
Measuring Illegal and Legal Corruption in American States: Some Results from the Corruption in America Survey December 1, The most commonly used measure of corruption in American states comes from the Justice Department’s “Report to Congress on the Activities and Operations of the Public Integrity Section.” United States.