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Electing the SenateIndirect Democracy before the Seventeenth Amendment$
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Wendy J. Schiller and Charles Stewart III

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780691163161

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691163161.001.0001

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Political Dynamics and Senate Representation

Political Dynamics and Senate Representation

(p.121) Chapter 5Political Dynamics and Senate Representation
Electing the Senate

Wendy J. Schiller

Charles Stewart III

Princeton University Press

This chapter explores the links between the indirect electoral mechanism and patterns of representational behavior that appear to differ markedly from that exhibited by U.S. senators today. Specifically, it examines whether U.S. senators' institutional activities were connected to the dynamics underlying their election to office—for example, whether their election was resolved on the first ballot or required joint session balloting to resolve, and their margin of victory. The chapter proceeds in three parts. First, it presents a quantitative analysis of the patterns of separate or joint elections along with the number of ballots it took to resolve elections once they moved into joint session. Second, it assesses the relationship between how senators were elected and key indicators of legislative activity, such as bill sponsorship, committee assignments, and roll call voting. Third, it compares the behavior of senators elected under indirect elections to their directly elected modern-day counterparts.

Keywords:   senators, U.S. Senate, indirect elections, legislative activity, direct elections, representational behavior

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