Voter turnout always drops off for midterm elections, but why?
Voter turnout, no matter how measured, is consistently lower in midterm elections compared to presidential election years. Political scientists aren’t sure why, but have some ideas.
Chart of the Week: A century of U.S. political history
A very cool interactive timeline map of U.S. congressional districts.
The polarized Congress of today has its roots in the 1970s
You don’t have to look hard to see evidence of political polarization — just watch cable news, listen to talk radio or follow social-media debates. Indeed, a new Pew Research Center report finds that Americans are more ideologically polarized today than they’ve been in at least two decades. Their representatives in Congress are divided too, and have […]
Public’s anti-incumbent mood hasn’t always predicted big electoral swings
Despite surveys showing anti-incumbent sentiments at or near all-time highs, most members of Congress appear to have little to worry about.
House set to lose six centuries of experience as Dingell, other long-serving members retire
The spate of congressional retirement announcements may seem like a lot but is within historical norms. But the retirement of several long-serving members likely will further reduce overall experience levels in both the House and Senate,
Just 28% of Republicans believe GOP advocates its principles well
A minority of Republicans believe that their party is doing a good job in standing up for its traditional positions of smaller government, tax-cutting and conservative social values.
Congress ends least-productive year in recent history
Congress enacted 57 laws — just 49 of them substantive — in the first session of its two-year term, the smallest first-year legislative output in nearly two decades.
Only 1 in 7 House districts were competitive in 2012
In last year’s elections, winners won by at least 10 points in all but 62 of the 435 House districts.
Views of Government: Key Data Points
Public confidence of government has fallen in recent years, and many Americans favor a smaller government providing fewer services, according to Pew Research Center surveys.
Trust in Government Nears Record Low
Public trust in the government, already quite low, has edged even lower in a survey conducted just before the Oct. 16 agreement to end the government shutdown and raise the debt ceiling.