Voting and Abstaining in the U.S. Senate: Mr. Downs Goes to Washington

Voting and Abstaining in the U.S. Senate: Mr. Down's Goes to Washington. (2011). Southern Business and Economic Journal. 1 (34), 55-72.

18 Pages Posted: 30 Nov 2012 Last revised: 4 Feb 2016

See all articles by Christopher Boudreaux

Christopher Boudreaux

Florida Atlantic University

R. Morris Coats

Nicholls State University

Bhavneet Walia

Kansas State University - Department of Economics

Date Written: November 30, 2012

Abstract

Rothenberg and Sanders (2000a) find little support for a Downsian theory of voter participation in the (104th) U.S. House of Representatives. Vote abstentions are common in legislative bodies. In the 2nd session of the 110th United States Senate, for example, the abstention rate was approximately 0.057. The present paper uses logistic regression models with fixed effects as well as random effects in an alternative legislative setting to determine whether vote participation in the 110th Senate conforms to “Downsian rationality.” Throughout the analysis, we find substantial evidence that legislators in the 2nd session of the 110th Senate made vote participation decisions in a manner consistent with Downsian rationality.

Keywords: Calculus of Voting, Senate, Shirking, Logit, Closeness, Expressive Voting, Instrumental Voting

JEL Classification: C23, D72, H70

Suggested Citation

Boudreaux, Christopher and Coats, R. Morris and Walia, Bhavneet, Voting and Abstaining in the U.S. Senate: Mr. Downs Goes to Washington (November 30, 2012). Voting and Abstaining in the U.S. Senate: Mr. Down's Goes to Washington. (2011). Southern Business and Economic Journal. 1 (34), 55-72. , Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2182923 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2182923

Christopher Boudreaux (Contact Author)

Florida Atlantic University ( email )

777 Glades Road
KH 145
Boca Raton, FL 33431
United States

HOME PAGE: http://home.fau.edu/cboudreaux/web/

R. Morris Coats

Nicholls State University ( email )

PO Box 2015
Economics and Finance
Thibodaux, LA 70310
United States
504-448-4237 (Phone)
504-448-4922 (Fax)

Bhavneet Walia

Kansas State University - Department of Economics ( email )

Manhattan, KS 66502-4001
United States

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
36
Abstract Views
553
PlumX Metrics