Fifteen years ago, Peters and Welch investigated the effects of corruption charges on the outcomes of U.S. House elections. Their evidence from 1968 to 1978 indicated that charges generally produced a decline in vote share of between 6% and 11%, depending upon the nature of the charge. Morals violations were the most consequential for candidates and conflict of interest the least. Continuing changes in American politics and the nature of campaigns have made corruption charges even more common and, indeed, central to many races. In the following research note, we explore whether the changing nature of congressional campaigns has altered the magnitude of the effects of corruption charges on congressional election outcomes.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Sociology and Political Science