Title

The Power Dynamics of Campaign Contributions and Legislative Rhetoric

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

9-1-2021

Department

Political Science, International Development, and International Affairs

School

Social Science and Global Studies

Abstract

Do committee speeches predict campaign contributions or vice versa? I study the dynamic endogenous interactions of energy sector campaign contributions to members of the U.S. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources and their reactions in the 105th–112th Congresses. Utilizing a Bayesian Structural VAR approach, I find evidence for a dynamic model where the interactions between rhetoric and contributions are bidirectional—donors and senators are sensitive to changes in each others’ signaling and their responses follow immediately. The analysis shows that lags, leads, and contemporaneous effects in the exchanges are not mutually exclusive. The signaling of both sets of political actors is sensitive to external pressures and these effects differ depending on their party’s position of power. The contributions drive most of the variation in the rhetoric, and Democrats and Republicans follow similar strategies dependent on their position of power.

Publication Title

Interest Groups and Advocacy

Volume

10

Issue

3

First Page

240

Last Page

263

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