Midterm Storm Brewing: Jobs and Housing Crisis Lost Democrats Massachusetts

( – promoted by buhdydharma )

Thomas Ferguson is Professor of Political Science at the University of Massachusetts, Boston and a Senior Fellow of the Roosevelt Institute. He received his Ph.D. from Princeton University and taught formerly at MIT and the University of Texas, Austin, and is the author or coauthor of several books, including Golden Rule: The Investment Theory of Party Competition and the Logic of Money-Driven Political System (University of Chicago Press, 1995) and Right Turn (Hill & Wang, 1986).

Most of Ferguson’s research focuses on how economics and politics affect institutions and vice versa. His articles have appeared in many scholarly journals, including the Quarterly Journal of Economics, International Organization, International Studies Quarterly, and the Journal of Economic History. He is a long time Contributing Editor to The Nation and a member of the editorial boards of the Journal of the Historical Society and the International Journal of Political Economy.

Ferguson and his colleague University Statistician at the University of Massachsuetts Jie Chen have together recently completed a Roosevelt Institute study and voting pattern analysis by Massachusetts towns and co-authored a paper based on that study titled 1, 2, 3 Many Tea Parties? (.pdf) into the causes of the election upset in Massachusetts earlier this year, that in their opinion points to possibly major Democratic upsets in the upcoming fall mid term elections.

The abstract of the Ferguson/Chen paper states that:

Passage of the health care reform bill has convinced some analysts that the Massachusetts Senate election might be a fluke. In fact, polls taken after the legislation passed show Republicans widening their lead in fall congressional races. This paper takes a closer look at the Massachusetts earthquake. It reviews popular interpretations of the election, especially those highlighting the influence of the “Tea Party” movement, and examines the role political money played in the outcome. Its main contribution, though, is an analysis of voting patterns by towns. Using spatial regression techniques, it shows that unemployment and housing price declines contributed to the Republican swing, along with a proportionately heavier drop in voting turnout in poorer towns that usually provide many votes to Democratic candidates. All these factors are likely to remain important in the November congressional elections.

Ferguson here talks with Paul Jay of The Real News Network with a summary of his study conclusions and their ramifications for the fall midterm elections:

Real News Network – April 19, 2010

Crisis not ‘big government” won Brown Massachusetts

Ferguson: Study shows it was jobs and housing crisis that lost Mass. election – bad news for Democrats


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    • Edger on April 20, 2010 at 00:32

    pretty much boiled down to “la la la la la – we can’t hear you!”

    Maybe they’ll hear it a little louder in the fall?

  1. a much bigger and better structured response but the Obama Administration chose to moderate itself before it actually proposed the stimulus then it compromised further.

    Mass unemployment requires a lot stronger and more direct economic stimulus than what was actually passed.  It may be too late for Democrats for November but oh well it’s their own fault.

    • Edger on April 20, 2010 at 21:09
  2. Massachusetts voters knew a Reagan Democrat when they saw one. But they never expected one in the White House. This was the first WTF vote in history.

  3. As I lurk and snicker.  It’s so fun to see people who are “Democrats” using Karl Rove’s teh maths.

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