Spatial Models of Parliamentary Voting

Front Cover
Cambridge University Press, 2005 M04 11
This book presents a simple geometric model of voting as a tool to analyze parliamentary roll call data. Each legislator is represented by one point and each roll call is represented by two points that correspond to the policy consequences of voting Yea or Nay. On every roll call each legislator votes for the closer outcome point, at least probabilistically. These points form a spatial map that summarizes the roll calls. In this sense a spatial map is much like a road map because it visually depicts the political world of a legislature. The closeness of two legislators on the map shows how similar their voting records are, and the distribution of legislators shows what the dimensions are. These maps can be used to study a wide variety of topics including how political parties evolve over time, the existence of sophisticated voting and how an executive influences legislative outcomes.

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Contents

Introduction
1
Theory and Meaning
2
A Theory of Spatial Maps
4
The 1964 Civil Rights Act
14
A Road Map to the Rest of This Book
15
The Geometry of Parliamentary Roll Call Voting
18
The Geometry in One Dimension
19
The Geometry in More than One Dimension
30
Statistical Issues
113
Conclusion
126
Practical Issues in Computing Spatial Models of Parliamentary Voting
128
Standardized Measures of Fit
129
How to Get Reasonable Starting Values for the Legislator Ideal Points
130
How Many Dimensions Should I Estimate?
141
The Problem of Constraints
155
Computing Made Easy Some Simple Tricks to Make Estimation Tractable
159

The Relationship to the Geometry of Probit and Logit
37
Conclusion
41
The Optimal Classification Method
46
The OneDimensional Maximum Classification Scaling Problem The Janice Algorithm
49
The Multidimensional Maximum Classification Scaling Problem
60
Overall OC Algorithm
82
Conclusion
85
Appendix
86
Probabilistic Spatial Models of Parliamentary Voting
88
The Deterministic Portion of the Utility Function
89
The Stochastic Portion of the Utility Function
97
Estimation of Probabilistic Spatial Voting Models
101
Conclusion
160
Conducting Natural Experiments with Roll Calls
162
MultipleIndividuals Experiments
163
LargeScale Experiments Using DWNOMINATE
172
Estimating a Common Spatial Map for Two Different Legislatures
187
Conclusion
195
Conclusion
197
Unsolved Problems
202
Conclusion
209
References
211
Index
225
Copyright

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Page 204 - As long as the reason of man continues fallible and he is at liberty to exercise it, different opinions will be formed. As long as the connection subsists between his reason and his self-love, his opinions and his passions will have a reciprocal influence on each other, and the former will be objects to which the latter will attach themselves.
Page 6 - We are confronted primarily with a moral issue. It is as old as the Scriptures and is as clear as the American Constitution. The heart of the question is whether all Americans are to be afforded equal rights and equal opportunities; whether we are going to treat our fellow Americans as we want to be treated.
Page 6 - The heart of the question is whether all Americans are to be afforded equal rights and equal opportunities, whether we are going to treat our fellow Americans as we want to be treated. If an American, because his skin is dark, cannot eat lunch in a restaurant open to the public, if he cannot send his children to the best public school available, if he cannot vote for the public officials who represent him, if, in short, he cannot enjoy the full and free life which all of us want, then who among us...
Page 12 - We define a belief system as a configuration of ideas and attitudes in which the elements are bound together by some form of constraint or functional interdependence.
Page 13 - Under certain appropriate circumstances, the single word "conservative" used to describe a piece of proposed legislation can convey a tremendous amount of more specific information about the bill — who probably proposed it and toward what ends, who is likely to resist it. its chances of passage, its longterm social consequences, and, most important, how the actor himself should expect to evaluate it if he were to expend further energy to look into its details. The circumstances under which such...
Page 15 - separate but equal" facilities was invalid and that segregation necessarily meant inequality. Finally, with the passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, the 1965 Voting Rights Act, and the 1968 Fair Housing Act, all de jure segregation was declared unlawful.
Page 16 - In practice, science is the observation, identification, description, experimental investigation, and theoretical explanation of natural phenomena.
Page 6 - South is defined as the 1 1 states of the Confederacy plus Kentucky and Oklahoma.
Page 12 - ... limitations. At the same time, our substantive concern forces upon us an unusual concern with measurement strategies, not simply because we propose to deal with belief systems or ideologies, but also because of the specific questions that we shall raise about them. Our focus in this article is upon differences in the nature of belief systems held on the one hand by elite political actors and, on the other, by the masses that appear to be "numbered" within the spheres of influence of these belief...

About the author (2005)

Keith T. Poole is a Professor of Political Science at the University of California, San Diego. He is the author or coauthor of over 40 articles as well as the coauthor of Congress: A Political-Economic History of Roll Call Voting and Income Redistribution and the Realignment of American Politics.

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