Saturday, June 8, 2013

Map of U.S. Legislator Polarization

It's good to put political data into easily understood visual or numerical form because it separates politics from the partisan, tribal-identification reactions we all have, not to mention it helps us give more effective performance evaluations to the people we're choosing to write laws for us. Here Seth Masket shows Boris Shor and Nolan McCarty's data. Darker means more polarized. Blue is how left-polarized Dems are, red right-polarized GOP.

Masket notes that CA, WA and CO all have very right Republicans and left Democrats. I think the commonality here is these are all states with large proportions of in-migrants from elsewhere in the U.S. who are disproportionately young renters in large cities, and also (in contrast) very large swathes of low population density land with multi-generation residents who own their homes and work in agriculture or resource extraction. (Original post here.)

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