Public Choice

, Volume 105, Issue 1–2, pp 41–59 | Cite as

Gender Bias and Selection Bias in House Elections

  • Jeffrey Milyo
  • Samantha Schosberg

Abstract

We demonstrate that female incumbents areof higher average candidate quality than maleincumbents. This quality difference is the result ofbarriers to entry faced by potential femalecandidates, although the observed effects of thisquality differential on vote share are partiallymasked by the fact that female incumbents are alsomore likely to be opposed or to be opposed by highquality challengers. Using data from House electionsfor 1984–1992, we estimate that the gender-baseddifferential in candidate quality yields an extra sixpercentage points of vote share for femaleincumbents.

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Ansolabehere, S. and Snyder, J. (1996a). The inter-election dynamics of campaign finance: U.S. House elections, 1980 to 1994. Unpublished manuscript, presented at the 1996 meetings of the American Political Science Association in San Francisco, CA.Google Scholar
  2. Ansolabehere, S. and Snyder, J. (1996b). Money, elections and candidate quality. Unpublished manuscript; presented at the 1996 meetings of the Midwest Political Science Association in Chicago, IL.Google Scholar
  3. Blau, F. and Beller, A. (1988). Trends in earnings differentials by gender, 1971-1981. Industrial and Labor Relations Review 41: 513–529.Google Scholar
  4. Box-Steffenmeier, J. (1996). A dynamic analysis of the role of campaign war chests in campaign strategy. American Journal of Political Science 40: 352–371.Google Scholar
  5. Burrell, B. (1985). Women's and men's campaigns for the U.S. House of Representatives. American Politics Quarterly 13: 251–272.Google Scholar
  6. Burrell, B. (1994). A woman's place is in the House. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.Google Scholar
  7. Darcy, R., Welch, S. and Clark, J. (1994). Women, elections and representation. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press.Google Scholar
  8. Erickson, R. and Palfrey, T. (1998). Campaign spending and incumbency: An alternative simultaneous equations approach. Journal of Politics 60: 355–373.Google Scholar
  9. Flammers, J. (1997). Women's political voice. Philadelphia: Temple University Press.Google Scholar
  10. Fox, R. and Smith, E. (1998). The role of candidate sex in voter decision-making. Political Psychology 19: 405–419.Google Scholar
  11. Gaddie, R. and Bullock, C. (1995). Congressional elections and the year of the woman: Structural and elite influences on female candidates. Social Science Quarterly 76: 749–762.Google Scholar
  12. Goodliffe, J. (1995). War chests and challenger quality. Unpublished manuscript, presented at the 1995 meetings of the Midwest Political Science Association in Chicago, IL.Google Scholar
  13. Green, D. and Krasno, J. (1988). Salvation for the spendthrift incumbent: Reestimating the effects of campaign spending in House elections. American Journal of Political Science 32: 884–907.Google Scholar
  14. Groseclose, T. and Stewart, C. (1998). The value of committee seats in the House, 1947-1991. American Journal of Political Science 42: 453–474.Google Scholar
  15. Heckman, J. (1979). Sample selection bias as a specification error. Econometrica 47: 153–161.Google Scholar
  16. Herrick, R. (1996). Is there a gender gap in the value of campaign resources? American Politics Quarterly 24: 68–80.Google Scholar
  17. Hersch, P. and McDougall, G. (1994). Campaign war chests as a barrier to entry in congressional races. Economic Inquiry 32: 630–641.Google Scholar
  18. Jacobson, G. (1990). The electoral origins of divided government. San Francisco: Westview Press.Google Scholar
  19. Jacobson, G. and Dimock, M. (1994). Checking out: The effect of bank overdrafts on the 1992 House elections. American Journal of Political Science 38: 601–624.Google Scholar
  20. Kahn, K. (1996). The political consequences of being a woman. New York: Columbia University Press.Google Scholar
  21. Krasno, J. and Green, D. (1988). Preempting quality challengers in House elections. Journal of Politics 50: 920–936.Google Scholar
  22. Leeper. M. (1991). The impact of prejudice on female candidates. American Politics Quarterly 19: 248–261.Google Scholar
  23. Levitt, S. (1994). Using repeat challengers to estimate the effects of campaign spending on election outcomes in the U.S. House. Journal of Political Economy 102: 777–798.Google Scholar
  24. Levitt, S. and Wolfram, C. (1996). Decomposing the sources of incumbency advantage in the U.S. House. Legislative Studies Quarterly 22: 45–60.Google Scholar
  25. Milyo, J. (1997a). The electoral and financial effects of changes in committee power: GRH, TRA86 and the money committees in the House. Journal of Law and Economics 60: 93–112.Google Scholar
  26. Milyo, J. (1997b). The economics of campaign finance: FECA and the puzzle of the not very greedy grandfathers. Public Choice 93: 245–270.Google Scholar
  27. Milyo, J. (1998). The electoral effects of campaign spending in House elections. Los Angeles: Citizens' Research Foundation.Google Scholar
  28. Milyo, J. (1999). What do candidates maximize (and why should anyone care)? Unpublished manuscript, presented at the 1999 meetings of the Public Choice Society in New Orleans, LA.Google Scholar
  29. Squire, P. (1989). Competition and uncontested seats in U.S. House elections. Legislative Studies Quarterly 14: 281–295.Google Scholar
  30. Squire, P. (1995). Candidates, money and votes. Political Research Quarterly 48: 891–917.Google Scholar
  31. Uhlaner, C. and Schlozman, K. (1986). Candidate gender and campaign receipts. Journal of Politics 48: 30–50.Google Scholar
  32. Werner, B. (1997). Financing the campaigns of women candidates and their opponents: Evidence from three states, 1982-1990. Women & Politics 18: 81–97.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jeffrey Milyo
    • 1
  • Samantha Schosberg
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of EconomicsTufts UniversityMedfordU.S.A.

Personalised recommendations