Buch

Interpreting congressional elections (2018)

the curious case of the incumbency effect

Abstract

The increase in the "incumbency effect" has long dominated as a research focus and as a framework for interpreting congressional elections. This important new book challenges the empirical claim that incumbents are doing better and the research paradigm that accompanied the claim. It also offers an alternative interpretation of House elections since the 1960s. In a style that is provocative yet fair, learned, and transparent, Jeffrey Stonecash makes a two-pronged argument: frameworks and methodologies suffer when they stop being critically considered, and patterns of House elections over the long term actually reflect party change and realignment. A must-read for scholars and students of congressional elections.