Small changes, big results: Legislative voting behavior in the presence of new voters

Anthony M. Bertelli, Jamie L. Carson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Changes in district boundaries in small magnitude electoral systems can have substantive consequences for representation. In the U.S., each decennial redistricting cycle infuses House districts with a large number of new voters, changing personal representation for many citizens. What effect does the influx of these new voters exert on member behavior? By assessing the extent of this change in constituencies in conjunction with member voting behavior on roll calls, we can determine if significant changes to a congressional district impact post-redistricting legislative behavior. Using panel data estimators and various measures of legislator behavior, we show evidence that supports this claim. Our findings have notable implications for debates over representation and electoral accountability in legislative assemblies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)201-209
Number of pages9
JournalElectoral Studies
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2011


  • Boundary changes
  • Redistricting

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Political Science and International Relations


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