Mayhew, David R. (2014). Patterns in American Elections. Oxford Handbook Online (Subject area: American Political Development). DOI: 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199697915.013.002
On U.S. electoral history, a good deal of research and experience has accrued since the ‘realignments’ interpretation kicked in half a century ago. Illuminating work has come from political science, economics, sociology, and history. Perspectives on other countries have weighed in. New concepts and measures have been introduced. Today, the American record looks quite different than it did in the 1960s. In a discussion of pattern and cause, six topics need to be highlighted: economic conditions, national security crises, race, long-term parity between the parties, short-term homeostasis, and personal incumbency advantage.
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