Representing America

Representing America : The Citizen and the Professional Legislator in the House of Representatives

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During the 1990s, many members of the House of Representatives could be characterized as citizen legislators - they either voluntarily limited their term in office or they had no prior political experience. Representing America compares the representational styles of these legislators with the professional legislators, who make a career out of being a legislator, elected at the time.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 132 pages
  • 149.86 x 223.52 x 12.7mm | 226.8g
  • Lanham, MD, United States
  • English
  • Reprint
  • 0739117289
  • 9780739117286

Review quote

Herrick and Fisher provide a smart and sophisticated analysis of the much ballyhooed "citizen legislator" in this important work. Their findings are sometimes surprising and sometimes predictable, but always move our understanding forward several steps. This book is a must for those interested in representation, term limits, and the influence of career goals of legislator behavior. -- Gary Copeland, professor of political science, University of Oklahoma Using a wide variety of variables, mostly collected by others, the authors develop a creative set of tests to determine the potential impact of term limits on the US House of Representatives in the 1990s... Highly recommended. CHOICE the book's strength is advancing factual knowledge of the (few) differences between the citizen and the professional legislator and linking the findings to ambition theory. APSA Legislative Studies Section Newsletter, Book Notes, January 2008 Debates over whether politicians should be 'of the people' or 'a cut apart from the people' are enduring because they penetrate to the philosophical heart of governmental structures. In this valuable short book, Fisher and Herrick utilize the term-limit movement and an impressive range of extremely creative concept measures to demonstrate that, despite the hopes of term-limit advocates, citizen legislators are remarkably similar to professional legislators. As such, this book makes important contributions at levels ranging from a narrow focus on congressional careers all the way tot he best way to organize democratic government. -- John R. Hibbing, University of Nebraska
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About Rebekah L. Herrick

Rebekah Herrick is associate professor at Oklahoma State University. Samuel H. Fisher, III is associate professor at the University of South Alabama.
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Table of contents

Chapter 1 Are Citizen Legislators More Responsive Than Professional Legislators? Chapter 2 Descriptive Representation Chapter 3 Constituency Relations Chapter 4 Substantive Representation Chapter 5 Effectiveness Chapter 6 Ethics Chapter 7 Interest Group Relations Chapter 8 Conclusion
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