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Election Proximity and Senatorial Roll Call Voting
American Journal of Political Science
Vol. 29, No. 1 (Feb., 1985), pp. 96-111
Published by: Midwest Political Science Association
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2111213
Page Count: 16
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This research on intraterm shifts in the voting behavior of U.S. Senators reveals that many reelection-seeking U.S. Senators deliberately change the ideological tenor of their roll-call voting during the course of their terms. More than a quarter of all Senators appear to undertake these changes designed to enhance reelection prospects. Their mean change is roughly one-sixth of the ideological distance between the most liberal and most conservative senators. In each of eight regions in the county, the preponderant shift is the hypothesized direction by both Democrats and Republicans. Retiring senators do not shift in the same manner as their reelection-seeking colleagues; on the contrary, in the fifth to sixth year interval, they tend to shift in the opposite direction. The research indicates that senators do not deliberately become moderate relative to their colleagues, as had been suggested by previous research. Rather, they appear to shift ideologically in the direction of likely electoral opponents.
American Journal of Political Science © 1985 Midwest Political Science Association