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GRAPH: Republicans Responsible For Hyper-Polarization Of Congress

ProudProgressive 2012/02/29 19:36:49

GRAPH: Republicans Responsible For Hyper-Polarization Of Congress
By Guest Blogger
Feb 29, 2012

Announcing her intention to retire yesterday, Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-ME) decried the “atmosphere of polarization” that she finds “frustrating.” While Snowe didn’t assign responsibility for the current climate of hyper-partisanship in Congress, a study by distinguished political science professor Keith Poole does. It should come as no surprise that the analysis finds Republicans are to blame for the gridlock.

Poole assessed all of the Republican and Democratic votes in the House and Senate from 1879 to 2011, and plotted both parties on a liberal to conservative axis. Poole’s study shows that beginning right around 1980, House Republicans began to vote in strict partisan lines considerably more than Democrats.

Note on the graph: The closer to 1.0, the more partisan that members’ votes were that year. The 10th percentile line represents a moderate member of Congress, while the 90th percentile line represents a member of Congress who, for example, is 90% more conservative than his/her co-partisans.

xcxcxcxcxcx


The graph shows that the Democrats have barely edged towards the left over the last 30 years, while both moderate and partisan House Republicans have veered way off to the extreme right. For instance, the partisan Republican (the “90% Republican”) in 2011 is hovering near the absolute threshold of the radical right. In comparison, the partisan Democrat (the “90% Democrat”) is far from his/her ideological extreme, having only made a negligible move to the left in the last 30 years. Even more critical is that a moderate Republican in 2011 (the “10% Republican”) is not really moderate anymore, having moved so far to the right that he/she is nearly as factional as the Democrat’s partisan member.

Poole’s study shows that House Republicans are more to blame than House Democrats for the lack of bipartisan compromise and overwhelming polarization that currently characterizes Congress. And considering Congress’s approval rating is 11% — lower than BP during its oil spill in 2010 — the American people are clearly fed up.


Read More: http://thinkprogress.org/politics/2012/02/29/43426...

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  • Joe Shwingding BN-ZERO 2012/02/29 19:52:48
    Joe Shwingding BN-ZERO
    +10
    EXCELLENT post PP!

    Something we have known for a long time and finally somebody put it all together.

    The Reagan revolution was the beginning of the end of Democracy. Impeaching a President for an extra marital affair, blocking bills that you once supported because of political ideology. Partisan dogma at its lowest form ... what a bunch of POS's they have elected and continue to support.

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  • GOP Poison 2012/03/01 14:44:44
    GOP Poison
    So when the president wants to compromise on issues and even gives the republicans everything they ask for {which they then turn and vote against} he becomes the divider and not a uniter. I wait with anticipation for the day when the president realizes that these people will not accept him or work with him under any circumstance. They hate him and he should hate them right back as all patriotic Americans do.
  • jubil8 BN-0 PON 2012/03/01 01:02:00
    jubil8 BN-0 PON
    +2
    I'd say "terrific post," but you do so many it would be redundant lol. So I'll say "ANOTHER terrific post." :)

    This should make it very clear that the inmates are indeed running the asylum.
  • Jackie G - Poker Playing Pa... 2012/03/01 00:38:37
  • CharlesG BN-0 2012/02/29 23:51:12
    CharlesG BN-0
    And the shift to New Coke...
  • LesWaggoner BN 1 2012/02/29 23:19:12
    LesWaggoner BN 1
    +3
    Nothing but agreement here. I haven't voted Republican since 1980. What a mistake that was.
  • mich52 2012/02/29 22:22:21
  • American 2012/02/29 21:07:55
    American
    +3
    I really didn't need a graph to show me what I already knew.
  • RJ~PWCM~JLA 2012/02/29 20:11:11
  • ProudPr... RJ~PWCM... 2012/02/29 20:28:06 (edited)
    ProudProgressive
    +8
    ThinkProgress is just reporting on it, they didn't do the study, and considering that ThinkProgress's reputation for accuracy is impeccable, it wouldn't be a negative if they had. Besides, you aren't really going to dispute the Republicans' agenda of obstruction these past few years, are you?

    The study was done by Dr. Keith Poole,

    Philip H. Alston Jr. Distinguished Chair
    Department of Political Science
    School of Public and International Affairs
    Baldwin Hall
    University of Georgia
    Athens, GA 30602

    Ph.D. University of Rochester

    His research interests include American Political-Economic History, Congress, Economic Growth and Entrepreneurship, and the Political-Economic History of Railroads. He is the author or coauthor of over 50 articles as well as the author of Spatial Models of Parliamentary Voting (Cambridge University Press, 2005), a coauthor of Polarized America: The Dance of Ideology and Unequal Riches (MIT Press 2006), Ideology & Congress (Transaction Press 2007), and of Congress: A Political-Economic History of Roll Call Voting. He has received grants from the National Science Foundation, the Carnegie-Bosch Foundation, and the Center for Political Economy.
  • RJ~PWCM... ProudPr... 2012/02/29 20:39:56
    RJ~PWCM~JLA
    +1
    Oh, it came from a *university*. Well, then - of course it's impartial and unbiased!
  • ProudPr... RJ~PWCM... 2012/02/29 20:53:52
    ProudProgressive
    +9
    Oops, I forgot. The new Right Wing mantra is "education is just for snobs", isn't it.
  • keymanjim ProudPr... 2012/02/29 21:06:04
    keymanjim
    +2
    Education is a poor substitute for intelligence.
  • ProudPr... keymanjim 2012/02/29 21:46:55
    ProudProgressive
    +6
    How would you know? You seem to typify the average conservative, who has neither.
  • keymanjim ProudPr... 2012/03/01 00:10:43
    keymanjim
    I happen to be an exceptional fiscal conservative.
  • Guru_T_... keymanjim 2012/03/01 14:22:37
  • keymanjim ProudPr... 2012/02/29 21:05:28
    keymanjim
    +2
    Keith Poole?
    The same Keith pool that said Ron Paul was the most conservative politician of the last 70 years?
    THAT Keith Poole?
  • ProudPr... keymanjim 2012/02/29 21:54:20
    ProudProgressive
    +7
    Yes, THAT Keith Poole.

    Professor Poole did NOT say that Ron Paul was the most conservative politician of the last 70 years. What he said was that Dr. Paul has the most conservative voting record of anyone who served in Congress for the period from 1937-2002.

    http://voteview.com/Is_John_K...

    For the complete study and its database, see if your library carries this:

    American Journal of Political Science, 42 (July 1998), pp. 954-993
  • Joe Shw... ProudPr... 2012/02/29 23:23:35
  • keymanjim ProudPr... 2012/03/01 00:11:46
    keymanjim
    Just so long as were on the same page here.

    Sorry for the delay. I was in the sauna.
  • activ1 ProudPr... 2012/03/01 05:03:59
    activ1
    +1
    Now THAT, was a slap upside the head!
  • keymanjim activ1 2012/03/02 03:54:23
    keymanjim
    What was? Was i suppose to read that?
  • GOP Poison ProudPr... 2012/03/01 14:53:14
    GOP Poison
    i would think these right wing fools on SH would one day come to a point where they see the futility in arguing with your absolute facts,and I wonder with their criticism of university proffessors why they do not wonder just why it is that the most brilliant minds in America are liberal and teaching at those univerities. Instead they look to a three times divorced drug addict that could not finish a year of college for their information. If the conservatives had any intelligence to brag about maybe they would be university profs.
  • Joe Shw... ProudPr... 2012/02/29 21:28:54
    Joe Shwingding BN-ZERO
    +4
    No sense trying to reach the knuckle dragging neanderthals, trailer trash, in-breds ... book learnin' isnt something the NASCAR crowd is fond of.
    NASCAR fans
  • mich52 Joe Shw... 2012/02/29 22:25:22
  • Joe Shwingding BN-ZERO 2012/02/29 19:52:48
    Joe Shwingding BN-ZERO
    +10
    EXCELLENT post PP!

    Something we have known for a long time and finally somebody put it all together.

    The Reagan revolution was the beginning of the end of Democracy. Impeaching a President for an extra marital affair, blocking bills that you once supported because of political ideology. Partisan dogma at its lowest form ... what a bunch of POS's they have elected and continue to support.
  • ProudPr... Joe Shw... 2012/02/29 20:30:26
    ProudProgressive
    +8
    Reagan's ascendancy may very well have marked the beginning of the end of American democracy. Never before was an entire political party completely dedicated to the idea that party comes before country on every issue. Never before were so many willing to sink the entire ship of state if they don't get 101% of what they're demanding.
  • Joe Shw... ProudPr... 2012/02/29 21:25:09
    Joe Shwingding BN-ZERO
    +4
    Republican Pussy's

    not playing anymore
  • jubil8 ... Joe Shw... 2012/03/01 01:05:20
    jubil8 BN-0 PON
    +4
    "Impeaching a President for an extra marital affair..."

    Not to mention that that particular war party was led by a man who was doing exactly the same thing at exactly the same time. It added a whole dimension to hypocrisy.
  • NPC 2012/02/29 19:43:48
    NPC
    +4
    Pelosi, Reid and Barry had all 3 Branches of Gov't for 2 years ! They only wanted to pass ObamaCare and Cap and Trade then. They rammed through ObamaCare.
    Good riddance to Snowe. Snowjob is her real name. Olympia Snowe is a Democrat. She is a nut job politician that voted 67% of the time for all Barack's policies. I don't need any study to tell me that 20 Million are unemployed. 47 Million on Food Stamps. 800,000 homes were foreclosed in 2011 and Gasoline in nearly $4,00 per gallon today. If you want the blame game then Harry Reid and Barack are the idiots you should confront over the disaster taking place in the U. S. Economy now.
  • ProudPr... NPC 2012/02/29 20:33:45
    ProudProgressive
    +9
    The Democrats never had control of Congress, given that the Republicans decided that 59 votes out of 100 was a minority.

    And we have had the most conservative, most activist Supreme Court in well over a century to deal with for over a decade.

    As for the economy, we are now in the midst of an accelerating recovery thanks to the President. In the past three years in spite of Republican obstructionism we have gone from being on the precipice of a second Great Depression to an economy that is slowly but surely returning to health. If the Republicans would just ONCE be willing to put the needs of the nation ahead of their partisan agenda who knows how much more we might be able to accomplish as a nation.
  • NPC ProudPr... 2012/02/29 20:54:55
    NPC
    +4
    There is no sense us ever having a conversation since you are a stated Progressive. Denial is your mantra. I have 5 small businesses and this POTUS has had enough time to start the process to initiate a planned Economic Recovery by now. I know the facts and the stats. I am also a Brown Grad and MBA form Boston U after I was a Combat Marine, You are not dealling with the average auto worker here. i have to tell you we will never have anything in common politically so don't waste your time replying to me again.
  • ProudPr... NPC 2012/02/29 21:58:27
    ProudProgressive
    +7
    Funny how with all that fancy learnin you don't even know what the three branches of government are and what their political record is.

    And you're right that "this POTUS has had enough time to start the process to initiate a planned Economic Recovery by now" THAT'S WHY THE ECONOMY IS RECOVERING.

    Finally, although you and I obviously have diametrically opposed views on just about anything political, please believe me when I say that I sinverely and genuinely THANK YOU for your military service to our nation. Some things transcend politics, and my respect for the brave men and women of the military is one of them.

    thank a vet
  • twocrows ProudPr... 2012/02/29 20:56:20
    twocrows
    +7
    be careful, PP. posting facts can cause some peoples' heads to explode.
  • ProudPr... twocrows 2012/02/29 21:59:08
    ProudProgressive
    +6
    I just present the facts. I can't be responsible for what people do with them.

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