Undergraduate Honors Theses

Thesis Defended

Spring 2011

Document Type

Thesis

Department

Political Science

First Advisor

Lauri McNown

Abstract

Although scholars have studied presidential legislative success for decades, they have tended to focus on the same causal factors. I investigated the effect of presidential campaign visits to congressional candidates on legislative support for the president’s preferences in order to push for innovation within the literature that discusses presidential legislative success. I used data from the 1994 midterms and the 104th Congress and the 2002 midterms and the 108th Congress. Regressions and predicted probability calculations revealed that members of the 104th Congress as a whole were more likely to vote for the president’s preferences at the beginning of the Congress when they received campaign visits and this support decreased over time. This study also found that Democrats and Republicans in the 104th Congress responded to visits with increased support for the president’s preferences. This support varied over time for Democrats and over margins of victory for Republicans.

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